Lack of clarity on roads could slow trade, says FTA
Wednesday 13 December 2017
Failure to keep key road users updated on plans for road improvements could seriously impede future trade, says the UK’s leading membership organisation for the logistics industry. According to the Freight Transport Association, logistics operators need urgent confirmation of the government’s priorities over investment in road improvements, to ensure adequate succession planning for fleet acquisitions and route planning for ongoing deliveries, and to keep Britain trading effectively. The call comes after the publication of the government’s second Road Investment Strategy (RIS 2).
FTA consulted with the Department for Transport and Highways England on the research, which led to today’s Initial Report on RIS 2. Under the report’s recommendations, the government will establish its priorities for major investment in motorways and trunk roads from 2020 onwards. The release of this latest document marks the completion of the initial investigation phase, which will now go out to public consultation.
According to FTA, the report does not contain sufficient information for operators who need to implement business planning and future investment programmes. As FTA Head of Road Network Management Policy, Malcolm Bingham, explains:
“Although the Road Investment Strategy will set out spending priorities for 2020 onwards, it’s vital to get the approach right at this stage. FTA members want to see more detail included now, to ensure key improvements are not overlooked or removed during the process of decision making. We appreciate the government has commissioned strategic studies investigating some of the biggest challenges facing our road network, but those key investment priorities must be pinned-down to give industry the time to prepare for major infrastructure projects. It’s not enough to say roads will be improved – we need to know which ones, and when!”
FTA will be working with its members, through its system of regional freight councils and UK Road Freight Council, to examine and analyse this initial RIS 2 report and will use the findings as the basis of the association’s response to the DfT consultation.
FTA Press Office