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Transport for the North has welcomed the publication of the National Infrastructure Commission’s ‘Congestion, Capacity, Carbon: Priorities for National Infrastructure’ report and looks forward to contributing to the consultation on a National Infrastructure Assessment.
Launching the report, Lord Adonis, Chair of the National Infrastructure Commission, warned that the UK faces gridlock on the roads, railways and in the skies, slower mobile and broadband connections and ever-worsening air quality unless the Government tackles the ‘three Cs’ – Congestion, Capacity and Carbon.
The report highlights the importance of giving infrastructure the right priority by choosing long-term investment over consumption, making full use of leading edge technology, and involving people and businesses up and down the country – with a national framework that incorporates local and regional priorities.
Transport for the North’s Strategic Transport Plan, which has been developed in partnership with civic and business leaders from across the North, will be published soon. This will include an indicative long-term Investment Programme, and we will be providing the Commission with evidence towards its National Infrastructure Assessment.
The report also stresses the need for making full use of leading edge technology, providing smart infrastructure for a smart nation. We agree that this is a key priority and have been working closely with partners to plan a phased Integrated & Smart Travel Programme, which will hugely simplify journey planning and travel on public transport across the North. Subject to Government approval, roll-out for the first tranche of this programme will begin in early 2018.
The National Infrastructure Commission reiterated its support for improving connectivity in the North of England and particularly for the Northern Powerhouse Rail programme. Transport for the North is working on an integrated plan to link Northern Powerhouse Rail to HS2. This was recently supported by the Chancellor with an announcement of funding to ensure seamless connections between HS2 and the Northern Powerhouse Rail network. We will providing later this year a response to the Commission on our plans for NPR including integration with the proposals for the Trans-Pennine Route Upgrade and also HS2.
John Cridland, Chair of Transport for the North, said: ““I welcome the National Infrastructure Commission’s call for the Government to tackle the ‘three Cs’ – Congestion, Capacity and Carbon – and I thank Lord Adonis for his continued support of Northern Powerhouse Rail as a national infrastructure priority.”
“We will soon be publishing our Strategic Transport Plan for the North, which will include an initial long-term Investment Programme. I hope that this Plan will be a crucial piece of evidence for the Commission in developing its National Infrastructure Assessment, as it will set out a pan-Northern view of the transport infrastructure needed to help tackle the 3 Cs and encourage transformational economic growth.”