|Previous Section||Index||Home Page|
Mr. Chope: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he will set out the timescale for achievement of the delivery reform measures to which transport funding increases announced by the Chancellor of the Exchequer on 15 July are linked. 
Mr. Jamieson [holding answer 19 July 2002]: The White Paper makes clear that action is already under way under the Government's 10-year plan for Transport to improve mechanisms for the delivery of transport improvements.
22 Jul 2002 : Column 736W
Mr. Chope: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he will set out the criteria to be used in assessing whether the connection between national objectives for transport and local delivery have been strengthened. 
Mr. Jamieson [holding answer 19 July 2002]: My Department will monitor the extent to which local transport authorities' local targets reflect the national targets in our 10-year plan and the progress they make in delivering against those targets.
Mr. Chope: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he will set out the delivery reform measures to which the transport funding announced by the Chancellor of the Exchequer on 15 July is linked. 
Mrs. May: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, pursuant to his answer of 16 July 2002, Official Report, column 143W, when work to widen the approach to the M4 from the A404(M) will start; how long the work will take to complete; and if he will place a copy of the planned changes in the Library. 
Tim Matthews has been asked by the Transport Minister, David Jamieson, to reply to your recent question about the proposed work to widen the approach road to the M4 from the A404(M). I am replying since Tim is currently away on Highways Agency business.
This work at M4, junction 8/9, is programmed to start in January 2003 and will take about ten weeks to complete.
In the meantime we will make the necessary arrangements to place plans of the proposed changes in the Library as soon as they have been finalised.
Mr. Jamieson: The road user charging research project in Leeds known as DIRECTS (Demonstration of Interoperable Road User End to End Charging and Telematics Systems) is progressing well with the full co-operation and assistance of Leeds city council. DIRECTS is research into the feasibility of an electronic system for charging drivers to use busy roads. It is intended to help local authorities interested in setting up their own local charging scheme; it should also assist the design of the national lorry charging system.
Temporary equipment will be set up on a small network of roads in south-east Leeds and local volunteers will have a small electronic charging unit fitted inside their vehicles to test the system. No-one will be charged for their journeys and the project will not affect other drivers using these roads.
22 Jul 2002 : Column 737W
We are now moving towards the first stage of infrastructure installation. The roadside apparatus to support the charging equipment will begin to be installed in September this year, and fitting of in-vehicle units to volunteers' vehicles will follow early next year. Recruitment of volunteers will also begin shortly. Once preparations for the demonstration are complete, it is expected that full trials will start around September 2003 and run for about a year.
Since the project was first planned, the Chancellor announced in the last Budget statement the Government's intention to introduce a distance-based road user charging scheme for lorries from 2005 or 2006. Many features of the DIRECTS research complement this objective.
In keeping with previous undertakings by Ministers, I have today written to all Leeds constituency MPs to explain to them in more detail what progress is being made locally, and copies of the letter have been placed in the House Libraries. I understand the city council is planning its own briefing for Leeds councillors. We will continue to work closely with Leeds city council to ensure that the interests of local people are met as fully as possible for the duration of the project.
Mr. Jamieson [holding answer 19 July 2002]: Trends in the defects index of local roads between 1984 and 2001 are shown at Table 3.1 of the "National Road Maintenance Condition Survey: 2001", copies of which are in the Libraries of the House. The index improved between 2000 and 2001. Data on the current condition of local roads are being collected at present and will be published next year.
Mrs. May: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what percentage of the road network in (a) England and (b) Great Britain was at 100 per cent. or greater stress in (i) 1996, (ii) 2000, (iii) 2001 and (iv) 2002 to date. 
Mr. Jamieson [holding answer 19 July 2002]: A stress map for the English Trunk Road network was published by the Department for 1996 based on actual traffic counts. It showed 3 per cent. of the network was operating above 100 per cent. stress and 10 per cent. of the network between 80 per cent. and 100 per cent. A map based on estimated 2000 traffic flows was included in the published 10-Year Plan. The Plan reported that 7 per cent. of the network was operating above 100 per cent. stress and 13 per cent. of the network between 80 per cent. and 100 per cent. More recent data are not available.
22 Jul 2002 : Column 738W
Mr. Jamieson [holding answer 19 July 2002]: Our guidance to authorities on local transport plans specifies major local road projects as any local road scheme with a gross capital cost exceeding £5 million. Examples of schemes other than bypasses are urban relief roads, rural widening schemes and new/improved accesses to development sites. It is for local authorities to decide what, if any, major schemes they wish to bid for under the local transport plan process.
Mr. Don Foster: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what research has been conducted (a) by and (b) for (i) his Department and (ii) the Highways Agency in relation to the (A) M60 J58 widening, (B) M25 J1215 widening, (C) A46 Newark-Lincoln improvement, (D) A43 M40-B4031 dualling, (E) A11 Roudham Heath-Attleborough dualling and (F) A1 Willowburn- Denwick improvement; if he will place copies of related documentation in the Library; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Jamieson: As part of the 1997 Roads Review a key objective was to develop a clear and open framework to appraise and inform the prioritization of trunk road proposals. To achieve this the Government developed a new approach to appraisal which is based on the following five criteria:
Under this appraisal system, my Department and the Highways Agency worked in partnership to produce one-page summaries showing the economic, environmental and social impacts of each trunk road scheme under consideration. The results of the Roads Review were published in July 1998 in "A New Deal for Trunk Roads In England". At the same time "A New Deal For Trunk Roads In England: Understanding The New Approach To Appraisal" was published which included one-page summaries for all the schemes considered during the review including those listed in the question. Copies of both these documents were placed in the Library at that time.
The above named schemes were added to the Targeted Programme Of Improvements (TPI) in July 1998. Once in the TPI these schemes would have been subject to environmental, traffic and structural assessments. However due to the large volume of documentation it would be impractical to place copies of these in the Library.
A1 WillowburnDenwick, A11 Roudham Heath and A43 M40-B4031 Dualling are currently under construction and are all due to open to traffic by the end of this financial year. Construction of the remaining schemes is either under way or will begin in the next year.
Mr. Don Foster: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what research has been conducted for his Department and the Highways Agency on the differential costs between programmed maintenance and ad hoc repairs; and if he will make a statement. 
22 Jul 2002 : Column 739W
Mr. Jamieson: The strategy for maintenance, which is based on the principles of minimising whole life cost, has been derived over the years from a number of studies. The effect of ad hoc repairs is always considered within a maintenance scheme against planned maintenance as part of a value management process and thus ensures value for money. The process, which has been developed over time, takes account of historical records of ad hoc repair costs and the effects of delaying planned maintenance for the specific network length under consideration.
|Next Section||Index||Home Page|