QEII Dartford - Thurrock River Crossing Joint Replacement Works

Project status:   Current

Start date:   6 April 2013
End date:  October 2014

Type:   Maintenance Scheme
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Maintenance Scheme

Part of our ongoing programme of work to maintain England's strategic road network

Cost:  £3 million

Managed by:   Area 5


The main works for this scheme have now been completed, excluding rib line works, which will take place overnight 25th November. No additional lane closures will be in place for these works. 

What is happening?

We are replacing the expansion joints on the Queen Elizabeth II (QEII) bridge.

When and where is this happening?

The first phase of work started in April 2013 and completed in October 2013. The second and final phase began in February 2014 and will be completed in October 2014. The QEII Bridge forms part of the Dartford-Thurrock River Crossing, which is a major crossing of the river Thames just outside Greater London. The crossing links Dartford, Kent in the south, with Thurrock, Essex in the north.

Why is this happening and what will it cost?

This work is required because the bridge joints are now approaching the end of their serviceable life and need to be replaced. The estimated cost of the works is approximately £3 million.

We successfully replaced three joints on the northern side of the bridge in 2013, the works in 2014 will replace the three joints on the southern side of the bridge.

How will the scheme be carried out?

We will make use of overnight lane closures on the QEII Bridge on weekdays to allow some works to take place. Traffic will be able to continue to use at least one lane on the QEII Bridge whilst these lane restrictions are in place. On some Saturday nights, we will have full closures of the QEII Bridge overnight between 10pm and 5am to allow more complex works to take place. We will also require 'extended hours closures' on some Saturday nights to alllow larger scale works to take place, between the hours of 8pm and 10am.

Whenever we are carrying out work on the QEII Bridge for this project, there will also be a closure of the M25 clockwise junction 31 entry slip road for safety reasons. Diversions will send motorists to M25 junction 30 where they can return on the M25 clockwise.

All closures of the QEII Bridge will mean southbound motorists will be diverted via the eastern bore of the Dartford tunnel instead

 A temporary ramp will be installed over each joint while work is taking place. Drivers may notice a change in the look of the carriageway, but the changes will have minimal effect on the ride quality and safety will not be compromised. The ramps will be removed once work has been completed in each section.

What are the benefits?

The durability of the structure will be improved once the works are complete, with the new joints expected to last 45 years. By completing the work now, we will eliminate the need to do these works under short notice emergency closures in the future, which would cause more disruption to motorists using the Crossing.

How do I find out more information ?

More information will be posted on this project page as it becomes available. You can subscribe to be alerted when updates are made.

If you have any queries about this project you should contact the Highways Agency Information Line by emailing ha_​info@​highways.​gsi.​gov.​uk or calling 0300 123 5000.

Details of when we plan to close the QEII Bridge for this project can be found on the 'Journey Impact' tab, above.

Details of scheduled roadworks are provided to help you plan your journey. Please note that works are weather- and resource- dependent and may need to be cancelled at short notice. This information is not updated in real time so please check Traffic England for current traffic conditions. Diversion timings are approximate and act as a guide only.

Will there be roadworks?

Roadworks will be required in order to undertake this work safely and efficiently. We are now in the second and final phase of roadworks. This second phase commenced in February 2014 and will be complete in October 2014.

Closures have been planned to take place overnight when traffic flows are at their lowest to reduce the potential impact on the travelling public.

Road Works

DateDurationDetailsAllow an Extra
Saturday 30 August 20148.30pm to 10amFull closure of QEII Bridge - joint replacement works. The M25 J31 clockwise entry slip road will also be closed10 - 30 minutes
Saturday 20 September 201410pm to 5amFull closure of QEII Bridge - joint replacement works. The M25 J31 clockwise entry slip road will also be closed10 minutes
Saturday 4 October 20148pm to 10amFull closure of QEII Bridge - ramp removal works. The M25 J31 clockwise entry slip road will also be closed10 - 30 minutes

How will you manage traffic?

Delays may be longer temporarily at the start of each works shift whilst traffic management and safety measures are deployed.

No speed restrictions will be needed so traffic will be able to move through the works at the existing speed limit. Ramps will be in place over the joints that are being worked on, but these will have minimal effect on the ride quality and safety will not be compromised. There will be no lane restrictions or complete closures during the day.

Will there be diversions?

A clearly signed diversion will be in place during full closures. Traffic will be diverted through the Dartford east bore tunnel.