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Mr. Redwood: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions what was the increase in road transport journeys in the last four years; and what change was made to the capacity of the road network during the same period. 
Mr. Syms: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions if he will list (a) road widening schemes for the strategic road network, (b) major trunk road schemes, (c) new bypasses on trunk and local
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roads and (d) local road improvement schemes outlined in "Transport 2010: The 10 Year Plan", indicating in each case when work will commence. 
Mr. Jamieson: The 10 Year Plan sets out the funding to be made available for 360 miles of motorway and trunk road widening and associated junction improvements, 80 major schemes tackling bottlenecks at other junctions, 100 new bypasses and over 100 other local road improvement schemes. Decisions on individual schemes and on their timing will depend upon the outcome of the multi-modal studies and decisions taken in the context of Regional Planning Strategies in the case of trunk roads and the local transport plan in the case of local roads. Schemes will also have to be appraised using the New Approach to Appraisal.
Mr. Waterson: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions (1) if he will list the special advisers in his Department together with their date of appointment and their responsibilities; which of them are authorised to speak to the media; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Peter Ainsworth: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions what assessment he has made of the potential liability to public funds resulting from litigation by Legacy plc over the withdrawal of preferred bidder status in relation to the dome sale. 
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Mr. Peter Ainsworth: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions what discussions he has had with (a) the Wellcome Trust, (b) Grosvenor Estates, (c) Quintain and (d) the BBC regarding the future of the dome. 
Ms Keeble [holding answer 19 July 2001]: As part of the on-going process, the Dome sale team has had, and continues to have, numerous meetings and discussions with interested parties concerning the future use of the Dome.
To reveal details of any of these discussions could compromise the on-going process and would be against the public interest. It is of course open to interested organisations to make their interest public.
The future of the dome is a key factor in the continued regeneration of the Greenwich Peninsula. We are keeping other major stakeholdersparticularly Greenwich Council informed of progress, and the Greenwich Peninsula Partnership continues to evolve.
Laura Moffatt: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions what progress is being made on the south-east second runway study; and when it will complete its work. 
Mr. Jamieson: The South East and East of England Study (SERAS) is examining a wide range of options at existing airports and new sites. We have completed the development and initial appraisal of a long list of options at individual sites and are now considering which options to take forward to Stage 2.
Stage 2 will involve the more detailed appraisal of a number of packages of options providing differing levels of capacity. Towards the end of the study, options will be narrowed down to a short list on which there will be full public consultation before Ministers make decisions.
We expect the study to be completed towards the end of this year. Public consultation will take place following completion of the study and the Secretary of State's decisions on the fifth terminal at Heathrow.
Following the public consultation we will carefully analyse the responses and consider these as part of our comprehensive review of aviation and airports policy and looking ahead for 30 years we shall set out our conclusions in next year's White Paper.
Mr. Syms: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions what plans he has to proceed with (a) an east-west rail link in London, (b) the Thameslink 2000 project and (c) an extension to the East London Line; and what the timetable is for construction. 
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Mr. Spellar: As my predecessor announced on 3 May, the Strategic Rail Authority and Transport for London are jointly taking forward work on project definition, including alternative service patterns, and design development of an east-west cross-London rail link. Once a project has been worked up, statutory powers would be required before it could be implemented. Construction of such a link could not in any event begin before 200506.
We are awaiting the Inspector's report on Railtrack's applications under the Transport and Works Act 1992 in respect of the Thameslink 2000 project. I cannot prejudge the eventual decision, but if the project receives approval, construction could begin in 2003.
The Inspector's report on London Underground Ltd.'s application under the Transport and Works Act 1992 in respect of the southern extensions to the East London Line is currently under consideration. Again, I cannot prejudge the outcome, but if this project were to receive approval, construction could begin in 2003. London Underground Ltd., under SRA sponsorship, intends to start work on the northern extension later this year, powers for which have already been approved.
Mr. Syms: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions if he will make a statement on the timetable for the modernisation of the (a) East Coast Main Line and (b) West Coast Main Line. 
Mr. Jamieson: A project development group led by the Strategic Rail Authority is currently reviewing Railtrack's proposals for the upgrade of the East Coast Main Line, including the time scales. Railtrack's proposals include four phasesto be completed in 2004, 2006, 2008 and 2010.
Railtrack have stated that they are committed to completing the West Coast Main Line route modernisation to schedule. Phase I of the work is due to be completed in 2002; the principal outputs of Phase II are due to be delivered in 2005.
Andrew George: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions what levels of payment have been made to local authorities to recompense them through the premium support grant for the 50 per cent. council tax discount given to (a) second homes and (b) other dwellings entitled to the 50 per cent. discount in each of the last two years (i) by district and (ii) by county and unitary authority. 
In the Rural White Paper the Government indicated that there would be consultation on a proposal that the additional council tax raised from ending the discount should be retained by the local authorities concerned.
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