Transport Committee questions M20 lorry park decision

01/06/2016
Highways Reporters

The Transport Select Committee says the government must do more to demonstrate that the decision to construct a 3,600-space lorry park near the M20 in Kent to relieve congestion during Operation Stack is the right one.

In a report launched today (1 June 2016), the Transport Select Committee said that the government is right to seek a solution to the disruption caused by Operation Stack, but that the decision to proceed at pace with its proposal for a lorry park had left behind some of the usual best practice when spending such large sums of money.

The Committee found that the government's decision to proceed was rushed in reaction to the events of the summer of 2015 when Operation Stack was used longer than ever before.

The government has set aside £250 million to build a permanent lorry park near junction 11 of the M20, capable of holding around 4,000 large goods vehicles.

Last week Balfour Beatty landed the contract to proceed with the works.

This will require an area of land equivalent in size to 90 football pitches (about the same size as Disneyland in California). It would be on a scale unprecedented in Europe, with just one other lorry park in the world rivalling it for size.

The Committee called on transport ministers to demonstrate the necessity of building the lorry park, including:


  • The cost-benefit ratios of alternatives to the lorry park


  • Whether the lorry park is a proportionate and appropriate solution to the scale and frequency of disruption associated with Operation Stack


  • The environmental and social costs that the lorry park will impose on the locality


  • The value of any benefits that the lorry park will bring locally and to the UK economy, and


  • The long-term costs of operating, maintaining, renewing and, eventually, decommissioning the lorry park.


Launching the report, Louise Ellman MP, chair of the Committee said: “The disruption caused by Operation Stack affects many people in Kent but this is not just a local issue. The routes to Dover and Folkestone are important nationally – they carry more than 80% of the road freight entering or leaving the UK.

"The government has settled on a lorry park as the best solution but what they are proposing is on a vast scale and could cost up to quarter of a billion pounds.

“Ministers need to do more in order to justify this spending and it should do more to demonstrate why a lorry park roughly the size of Disneyland in California is better than the alternatives we heard about during our inquiry.

"We are not saying that the government should not press ahead with its proposal, only that it has more work to do to persuade us of the business case for this investment.”
Highways jobs

Definitive Map Manager

Cambridgeshire County Council
£32,825 - £35,401
This role is based within the Highways Service at Cambridgeshire County Council and provides an unusual and... Cambridgeshire
Recuriter: Cambridgeshire County Council

Bridge Park Operations Manager

Brent Council
£38,799 - £41,706 p.a. inc.
This is an exciting opportunity to play a key role in managing the operations and contributing towards the... Brentford (City/Town), London (Greater)
Recuriter: Brent Council

Assistant Engineer

Cambridgeshire County Council
£21,074 - £30,756
A great opportunity for someone looking to start or develop a career in Highways Engineering including the... Cambridgeshire
Recuriter: Cambridgeshire County Council

Head of Strategic Transport

Cheshire East Council
£64,000 - £75,000 + benefits
We’re committed to “working for a brighter future together” – and we expect you to be too! Cheshire
Recuriter: Cheshire East Council

Regeneration Manager

Mole Valley District Council
£52,895 - £57,143 FTE
This is a great career opportunity to specialise in town centre regeneration and repositioning. Dorking, Surrey
Recuriter: Mole Valley District Council

Technical Services Officer (Mechanical)

Kirklees Metropolitan Council
£36,876 - £38,813
This is an exciting and challenging time for Kirklees and we want to expand our team to manage and deliver construction... Kirklees, West Yorkshire
Recuriter: Kirklees Metropolitan Council

Road and Footway Asset Engineer

Kent County Council
£28,925 per annum
An exciting opportunity has arisen to join the Road and Footway Asset Team as an Asset Engineer. Kent
Recuriter: Kent County Council

Head of Waste

Lincolnshire County Council
£65,651 - £70,725
As Head of Waste, you will be commercially focussed and forward-thinking. Lincolnshire
Recuriter: Lincolnshire County Council

Assistant Director

Reading Borough Council
Up to £92k
It’s the ideal time to take the lead on our modernisation agenda, and deliver growth in the trading of our front line services. Reading, Berkshire
Recuriter: Reading Borough Council

Assistant Director – Highways

Lincolnshire County Council
£82,264 - £107,878
Come and lead the future agenda for our highways services. Lincolnshire
Recuriter: Lincolnshire County Council

County Highways Manager

Lincolnshire County Council
£55,503 - £60,578
Seeking a highly motivated leader and an excellent communicator, who has a proven ability to build relationships and trust, leading by example. Lincolnshire
Recuriter: Lincolnshire County Council

Local Highways Manager (East) - Lincolnshire County Council

Lincolnshire County Council
G12 £43,662 - £50,430
Seeking someone who combines excellent technical knowledge with a dedication to the customer. Lincolnshire
Recuriter: Lincolnshire County Council

Download your Highways App

Google App Apple App

Highways on Fridays

Latest Issue

latest magazine issue

Latest Issue

The ALARM survey 2019

Game over for flyovers?

Traffex, Parkex and Cold Comfort Scotland previews

View the latest issue

Latest Video