The latest phase of consultation on Future Hoo – our proposals on how best to invest £170m to protect the environment and deliver needed road and rail infrastructure on the Hoo Peninsula has completed
The consultation programme, which began on 29 November, 2021, outlined the ways in which our project team had listened to the earlier views of residents on the Housing Infrastructure Fund (HIF) scheme.
After leafletting more than 24,500 homes about the consultation and creation of the Future Hoo website, we hosted five public events under strict COVID-19 measures, as well as briefings for local parish councils and community groups.
The consultation programme was also promoted in the local press, via our enewsletter which is emailed to 7,500 local residents, and via social media. A further 500 residents who had asked to be kept up to date on Future Hoo were also contacted about the consultation by emails from the project’s team.
More than 200 members of the public attended the events and we received 612 completed questionnaires and comments via email. Nearly 1,600 people visited the website, with 28,000 page views, during the consultation period.
The Future Hoo project will now not include a proposed flyover as part of Phase 1 of a new relief road, but a new signalised junction on the A289 to link with Woodfield Way with local improvements to Islingham Farm Road. This link will provide an alternative route on and off the peninsula. The HIF road scheme has been split into six phases based on the geographical location but does not reflect the order of construction.
Infrastructure first approach to economic development
Leader of Medway Council, Cllr Alan Jarrett said: “Thank you to everybody who gave us their views on how the Future Hoo proposals have evolved and demonstrated how we have listened to initial concerns. This latest consultation will help shape the future of communities on the Hoo Peninsula and ensure we are able to adopt an infrastructure first approach to the economic development of this important part of Medway.”
The consultation highlighted progress on the environmental programme and development of the outline concepts for three more community parklands around Hoo. The team also provided an update on planning permission being granted for Cockham Community Parkland, a new community park covering 127.75 acres (51.7ha) of private land to the south of Hoo St Werburgh and the east of Chattenden.
The possible design of the proposed new railway station was also unveiled along with how a series of railway crossings will be retained and upgraded with new safety features for drivers and pedestrians. The initial plans for the DC electrification of the track required for a 12-car rail service have been discounted and new options are currently being explored.
The road scheme presented significant changes on Phase 1, whereby the overbridge and slip roads have been superceded with the t-junction design. The road team also presented a second alignment on the Phase 2 spur road alignment as investigation continues. Lastly a new local road alignment was presented on Phase 6, whereby the Road team continue to engage with the residents and Ward Councillors of the area.