March 4 2015
England’s 150 plus highway authorities should be significantly reduced in number, according to delegates attending a CIHT Procurement & Delivery Panel event in London last Thursday.Not one of the 50 strong audience of local highway professionals raised their arm in a show of hands when asked by CIHT Director of Policy & Technical Affairs Andrew Hugill if the country should keep with the current arrangements. And no one thought either that the number of highway authorities should even be as high as 50.After some discussion it was suggested that between 20 and 30 local highway authorities would be more suitable, although one delegate went as far as to say there should just be one national authority looking after local roads.Reducing the number of authorities would, it was said, help provide a more consistent level of highway service across county boundaries. But fears were expressed that smaller service providers would lose out from any change in the status quo.CIHT’s Procurement & Delivery Panel Chair Stephen Child followed up by suggesting that rather than reduce the number of highway authorities, neighbouring councils should be encouraged to work collaboratively together.This discussion came towards the end of a lively day of presentations and workshop sessions.They included an overview of highways procurement by Andrew Hugill, who said that local authority budgets do not look promising for the next five years and that pressures on revenue expenditure are likely to increase. Authorities who strive for efficiency savings and good asset management will be better prepared going forward, he added.Highways Maintenance Efficiency Programme advocate Matthew Lugg spoke about a new incentivised funding arrangement for local authorities currently being developed, which allocates money based on which of three performance ‘bands’ authorities find themselves in. “This is not about penalising authorities, it is about rewarding good practice. The aim is to get everyone up to the highest band,” he said.Delegates later split into groups to discuss what constitutes good procurement practice. Answers included “effective communication between client and contractor” and “not assuming that cheapest is best”.When asked to list what barriers exist to effective service delivery, one response was: “The unpredictability of budgets; a five year plan for local roads would help to iron out peaks and troughs with workload”.One senior highways specialist said that more professionals need to “be freed from procurement to so they can get on with the engineering” and went on to say that procurement needs to change to get away from “essay questions and textbook answers, and then focusing on the cheapest price.”Presentations also came from Mark Darlow-Joy of Gloucestershire County Council, Nick Yarwood of Worcestershire, Dave Rowley of Ringway Infrastructure Services, Tony Turton of the Highway Agency, Rowland Gordon of the London Borough of Croydon and Dave Brown of EM Highway Services.Andrew Hugill concluded proceedings thanking both Ringway and EM Highway Services for sponsoring the session.
(Photo copyright David Holt and licenced for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence)
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May 14 2015
CIHT welcomes the potential opportunity for transport to be given a greater strategic focus through the Cities Devolution Bill as giving greater prominence to transport can unlock wider benefits. Transport offers economic, social and health benefits, particularly in congested urban situations. Cycling and walking need to feature prominently in discussions about transport decision making, investment and management in city regions.
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CIHT Awards 2015 entries open
Highways Agency rewards its suppliers
February 23 2015
Department for Transport Questions
January 28 2015
Free places available for the CIHT National Conference
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Local Growth Funding - £1bn investment in local economies across England
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New Issue of Transportation Professional Available
February 18 2015
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February 26 2015
Local transport – its planning, funding and governance – has seen big changes in the last few years. Will this help local transport contribute more to economic growth and quality of life?
February 25 2015
Designs showcased for new London river crossing
Call for more public involvement with infrastructure planning
February 24 2015
Professor Glen Lyons, CIHT Council Member, from the University of West of England secured a secondment to the New Zealand Ministry of Transport. In this podcast Glen outlines the scope of the project: “the real challenge was to combine how transport might develop with how society itself might develop…we are fundamentally embracing uncertainty”.
March 4 2015
Drug drivers to be caught more easily under new law
Funding for city cycle projects announced by Government
March 6 2015
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March 10 2015
Call for a National Transport Strategy at CIHT Annual Conference
March 11 2015
National Conference calls for greater devolution
Rail lines drawn to aid London growth
Transport group appoints new head
March 18 2015
The Construction Industry Council (CIC) has launched its election briefing this week.
2015 budgets highlights how transport is an engine for growth
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March 20 2015
Northern Transport Strategy
March 25 2015
More clarity demanded of Northern transport strategy
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March 24 2015
£275m Challenge Fund for local infrastructure - winning authorities announced
March 26 2015
ALARM survey highlights concerns over the state of the local road network
April 2 2015
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 13 2015
The Labour party has launched their 2015 election manifesto today, including a 5-point plan aimed at improving transport in the UK.
April 14 2015
The Conservative party and the Green party have both unveiled their respective 2015 election manifestos today.
April 15 2015
April 22 2015
April 17 2015
CIHT have analysed and reviewed the recent transport commitments in a number of political party manifestos released this week.
May 13 2015
May 27 2015
Queens Speech 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.
June 18 2015
Highways England’s New Chief Executive
June 25 2015
Network Rail upgrades to be delayed by government
July 1 2015
CIHT welcome the Davies Commission final report
July 8 2015
July 9 2015
An English Summer Budget: a CIHT Review
Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne, announced a major change to the funding of England’s Strategic Roads Network (SRN) in the Budget.
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
July 31 2015
CIHT has an opportunity to put forward the thoughts and representations of its membership suggesting ideas for policies or reforms for inclusion in the Spending Review.
August 6 2015
Transport can have a positive impact on the local economy, although the role of transport in stimulating growth is not as clear-cut as assumed by many decision makers is not as clear-cut assumed by many decision makers. This is the conclusion from a report produced by the What Works Centre for Local Economic Growth.
August 5 2015
NE&C 2015 Awards - promotion and entry guidelines
August 12 2015
The National Audit Office (NAO) have recently published ‘A short guide to the Department for Transport’.