The DfT has challenged the Highways Agency (HA) to “become a high performing asset management organisation” able to forecast the levels of future investment needed to maintain its network (TransportXtra).
The DfT is calling on the HA to move beyond simply monitoring the current condition of its highways assets and start estimating likely deterioration. To do so, the HA is being urged to develop tools that model maintenance investment levels, the priority schemes for the available funding, and the condition levels that will result.
The new requirement for the HA comes as its budget for maintenance is gradually reducing from an average of £900m a year under the last spending review period to £700m in 2014/15, reports TransportXtra.
The condition of the strategic road network continued to improve in 2012 but the HA will have £59m less to spend on maintenance in 2013/14 (£749m in total – a 7% reduction).
The DfT wants the HA to reduce the costs of effectively maintaining the trunk and motorway network. However, the Agency reported that the maintenance cost per lane mile rose by 5% in 2011/12 compared with the previous year.
Click here to read the full TransportXtra report.