Plans for Tilbury2 moved a step closer this week after the Port of Tilbury submitted an application for a development consent order to the Planning Inspectorate.

The proposed new terminal will be built next to the Port of Tilbury on a 152-acre site which was part of the former Tilbury Power Station.

If the planning application gets the go-ahead Tilbury2 is expected to be in operation by the second quarter of 2020 and will act as a satellite of the main port.

It will include a roll on/roll off ferry terminal, a facility for importing, processing, manufacturing and distributing construction materials, a goods storage area and a new national strategic rail and road connection into the site.

Tilbury2 is part of the Port of Tilbury’s £1bn investment programme for the port which is projected to double volumes from 16 million to 32 million tonnes across the quay and triple direct jobs from 3,500 to 12,000 over the next 10 to 15 years.

Tilbury Port said the expansion plans are driven by rising demand for construction materials and aggregates, imported and exported cars, and an increase in ferry traffic carrying consumer goods, perishables and steel between Europe and the UK.

Charles Hammond, chief executive of Forth Ports Group, which owns the Port of Tilbury, said: “As London and the South East grow, Tilbury grows. Tilbury2 will deliver much needed port capacity to support businesses importing and exporting to-and-from Europe and across the globe at a crucial time for the UK.

The Tilbury2 Development Consent Order will be examined next year by the Planning Inspectorate with a final decision by the Secretary of State for Transport expected in 2019.