January 28 2015
Network Rail has been urged to publish a long term vision for the railways up until 2043 and clearly set out work expected to be carried out in each five year control period.Transport Select Committee chair Louise Ellman said on Friday it is concerning that witnesses called to a recent inquiry felt there was no clear long term plan for the railways. A forward looking strategy, she added, should set out confirmed objectives and plans for the next five years, with provisional plans for each five year period.The Committee’s report ‘Investing in the Railways’ also raised concern that key rail enhancement projects such as electrification in the North and North West of England have been announced by Ministers without Network Rail having a clear estimate of what the projects will cost. This is leading, Ms Ellman says, to uncertainty about whether the projects will be delivered on time, or at all.“There are worrying signs for the capacity of Network Rail to manage multiple, complex engineering projects simultaneously,” Ms Ellman said. “Network Rail must demonstrate that it can deliver key improvements on time, and while still delivering a safe and efficient service for all passengers.”Her Committee also said Network Rail should publish a ‘traffic light’ status update for each project committed to in a control period, which would make clear whether, for example, a project had been provisionally approved subject to detailed costings, finally approved but without a start date or approved and ready to start.The report also commended the work of Network Rail engineers who rebuilt the seawall and re-opened the railway line at Dawlish, following the devastating storms.In addition the report emphasised that engineering over runs at Christmas, which left thousands of passengers stranded, was unacceptable. Network Rail must, it said, demonstrate how it will learn from the mistakes it has made in its engineering works and maintain a decent service to passengers while enhancement work is carried out.A Network Rail spokesman said: "We have taken on board the Transport Select Committee’s comments and are addressing any concerns that they have raised."Photo: Network Rail
Return to news listing
January 21 2015
CIHT Awards 2015 entries open
Highways Agency rewards its suppliers
January 28 2015
Free places available for the CIHT National Conference
January 29 2015
Local Growth Funding - £1bn investment in local economies across England
February 11 2015
Devolution of transport powers encouraged by new manifesto
February 13 2015
New Issue of Transportation Professional Available
February 18 2015
Chancellor urged to increase certainty for local transport
February 25 2015
Call for more public involvement with infrastructure planning
March 4 2015
Streamlined local highway arrangement suggested
March 10 2015
Call for a National Transport Strategy at CIHT Annual Conference
March 11 2015
Transport group appoints new head
March 20 2015
Northern Transport Strategy
March 25 2015
More clarity demanded of Northern transport strategy
Joint venture secures Newport M4 upgrade
April 1 2015
Highways England, the government-owned company which will deliver the largest investment in England’s major roads in a generation, officially launched today.
April 10 2015
April issue of Transportation Professional Available.
April 22 2015
June 11 2015
Ministers from the Department for Transport answered oral questions in the Commons on 11 June.
Andrew Jones, new Minister for Local Roads has announced the ‘pilot exercise’ for the local highways maintenance funding incentive element.
June 12 2015
Highways England have brought together a panel of experts to encourage excellence in road design.
June 19 2015
The June 2015 issue of Transportation Professional is now available for members of CIHT to view.
July 10 2015
Government Outlines Productivity Challenge
July 17 2015
July/August issue of Transportation Professional Available.
Ministers from the Department for Transport answered oral questions in the Commons on 16 July.
Fixing the foundations: commentary
July 23 2015
HMEP’s updated Standard Form of Contract and Procurement Suite can help the highways sector to procure services to maintain local roads, more efficiently.
July 29 2015
August 5 2015
August 6 2015
NE&C 2015 Awards - promotion and entry guidelines