The Thames Tideway Tunnel, the £4.2bn new super sewer to be built under a 25km stretch of the River Thames from west to east London, has been awarded ‘Best Planning Project of the Year‘ at the 2015 RTPI Planning Excellence awards, winning the overall Silver Jubilee Cup.

BLP are delighted that the positive and original approach to planning that it helped pioneer has been recognised with this distinguished award and are proud of its contribution, as principal legal advisors, to the delivery of this world class infrastructure project.

The RTPI awards took place on 6 July 2015 and are the UK and Ireland’s most prestigious planning awards. In an extremely competitive field, the Thames Tideway Tunnel was praised by judges as “an exceptional solution to an extremely complicated planning problem”.

The Thames Tideway Tunnel was one of the first and largest schemes to secure a Development Consent Order under the Planning Act 2008 as a Nationally Significant Infrastructure Project.

The project faced uniquely complex challenges during the consenting process, in part because the scheme involved 14 local authorities and more than 900 community groups with which to consult and engage in a meaningful way.

An original and innovative approach to the new legislation and an early and positive focus on high quality public consultation enabled the planning obstacles to be addressed, the project refined and ultimately the delivery of a challenge free consent within the scheme timetable.