Deloitte response to announcement on UK roads
19 March 2012
Following today’s announcement by the Prime Minister on the UK road network and infrastructure needs, Ian Simpson, Head of transport at Deloitte, the business advisory firm, said:
“Today’s announcement is a valuable step forward towards the provision of adequate and stable funding for the country’s strategic road network. New mechanisms such as tolling would provide a welcome addition to the funding landscape to deliver major transport infrastructure and economic growth.
“Across the UK road network, demand is forecast to continue to increase on all our major arteries and by 2025 congestion on the English road network will have risen by 27 per cent over 2003 levels.
“The feasibility study launched today will need to be comprehensive if it is to come up with a workable solution, balance attractiveness to the market with taxpayer value and win over a sceptical public.
“The study needs to examine the scope for the tolling of both new roads and additional lanes. A 2008 Government study into the charging of extra lanes on existing motorways found this is both technically and financially viable and could improve capacity in a shorter timescale.
“The government needs to consider how private operators can be incentivised to provide increased capacity. A user-based charge would do this but would require designing a complex mechanism to deliver it. Any new funding also needs to be targeted at the critical bottlenecks on our network, releasing schemes which are well developed and offer a high economic return.
“How new operators of the strategic road network would interact with the authorities who own and operate the remainder of the road network, Local Transport Bodies and Local Enterprise Partnerships also needs to be considered, particularly where the existing strategic road network links up to local authority roads.”
Deloitte LLP is the United Kingdom member firm of Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited (“DTTL”), a UK private company limited by guarantee, whose member firms are legally separate and independent entities. Please see www.deloitte.co.uk/about for a detailed description of the legal structure of DTTL and its member firms.
The information contained in this press release is correct at the time of going to press.
Member of Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited.