A consultation to gather insight on whether England could benefit from having a national transport strategy - and on how such a strategy could be developed and implemented - has been initiated by the Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE).
Running until May 12, the consultation seeks evidence and views from infrastructure and transport professionals, civil engineers, civil society groups, and other interested parties. ICE will then make recommendations about developing a national transport strategy in a follow-up paper.
ICE says that England’s transport network is struggling because of multiple factors, including decades of under-investment in some regions, overly centralised decision-making that has contributed to disparity across the network, COVID-19, and high inflation.
“The country is behind in meeting many of its infrastructure targets, and the transport sector lacks sufficiently detailed policies, plans or metrics to make investment and planning decisions that are focused on achieving the most desirable outcomes - for example, improving people’s ability to travel easily and decarbonising the transport network,” it said. These problems have been exacerbated by delays to major projects such as HS2 and the Integrated Rail Plan for the North and Midlands (IRP). Budget cuts, staff shortages and industrial action have also all had an impact on service levels.
“Together, these issues risk making public transport less attractive, when increasing its use is vital,” said ICE.
Read this article in full in RAIL issue 981 here
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