A new Deal for Transport Better for Everyone The Government's White Paper on the Future of Transport Contents Foreword Acknowledgements Scope of the White Paper part I chapter 1: a new Deal for Transport part II chapter 2: Sustainable Transport Chapter



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Investment in trunk roads
Our road network is largely complete. Maintaining the trunk road network will be the first priority in future. Details of our refocused investment strategy for trunk roads in England will be set out in the report of the Roads Review in England. There will be separate reports for Scotland and Wales.

Following years of inadequate funding, we have increased the resources available for trunk road maintenance in England. The Highways Agency is reviewing its contractual arrangements for maintenance to explore the scope for new partnership arrangements. The review will consider how far longer term contracts accompanied by additional risk transfer can ensure that maintenance will be carried out more effectively and efficiently. The Agency is also exploring the scope for private finance projects for the maintenance, finance and operation (MFO) of trunk roads. We will consider other ways of providing greater funding stability, and will consider how further incentives may be built into funding mechanisms to encourage the optimisation of whole life costs.
Aviation and airport regulation
Large airports inevitably exercise a degree of monopoly power over the market for air travel into and out of their areas. We will ensure that the system of economic regulation of airports continues to promote the interests of airport users, both airlines and air passengers. In preparing a new airports policy White Paper (see Chapter 3) , we will consider how airport regulation should support our wider transport policy objectives.

Our Green Paper on utility regulation includes proposals to maintain and enhance the effectiveness of the system by bringing airport regulation into line with the model which applies to other utilities and by granting the CAA, as airports regulator, concurrent powers with the Director General of Fair Trading under the Competition Bill. We have also sought views on the extent to which other reforms recommended for the energy, water and telecommunications utilities might be applied to airports, such as giving the CAA a primary duty to protect the interests of consumers and the creation of a duty on regulators to have specific regard to Ministerial guidance on environmental objectives. In the light of responses to the consultation, we will bring forward proposals for legislation.



We will continue to promote the interests of our successful UK aviation industry and both passengers and freight users through the negotiation of international air services agreements. Our aim is to achieve further liberalisation of international air services wherever possible in our bilateral aviation negotiations with other countries. We will only support the European Commission taking over responsibility for aviation negotiations when it can demonstrate that it could do better than Member States acting on their own.

We wish to see the liberalisation of transatlantic services, our largest aviation market outside the EU. However, such liberalisation must be on the basis of fair competition, including effective access to the large US internal market, and with adequate protection for small and new entrant carriers against abuse of market power.

The proposed alliance between British Airways and American Airlines would provide effective access to the US internal market for the UK's largest carrier, but has yet to be authorised by the competition authorities. Authorisation is at least in part dependent on the liberalisation of the UK-US market.
Investment in aviation
We believe that the level of investment and efficiency that we need in our National Air Traffic Services (NATS) can best be achieved through a partnership between the public and private sectors. We therefore recently announced proposals for a partnership of this kind to help NATS finance the investment it needs to operate effectively and to mobilise private sector resources. Our preference is that 49% of the shares, and a golden share, are held by the Government; and 51% by private investors, including employees. We will consult further on the implementation of this decision, which will require legislation.

Our aim is to guarantee the highest safety standards. The CAA is currently responsible for the provision of air traffic control services though NATS and for regulating the safety of those services. We will bring forward proposals to ensure that air safety regulation is conducted separately from NATS and for economic regulation of air traffic control services. We will ensure that safety regulation is independent, open and transparent and that the industry and its employees can play a full part.


Trust Ports
The diversity of ports in the UK and the competition between them offers benefits to their customers and to the wider economy. We believe there is a role for the private sector and for trust ports - established under local Acts of Parliament and run on a non profit-making basis for the benefit of all port users and wider local/regional interests. We withdrew the previous Government's plans to force the privatisation of trust ports.

We are currently reviewing the role and status of trust ports in Britain (of which there are over 90), in particular in relation to their operations, economic activities, accountability and the constraints of their statutory powers and duties. We will consult with the industry and other interested parties and announce our conclusions in due course.


Devolution
Different parts of the UK have differing transport needs. Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland will be able to consider their own transport priorities under the new arrangements for a Scottish Parliament, a National Assembly for Wales and an Assembly for Northern Ireland. Our plans to devolve greater powers on transport and other matters will improve local accountability and democracy, helping to ensure that solutions reflect local needs and circumstances.
Regional action
Integrating transport and planning in the English regions
Our proposals for modernising the planning system in England highlight the importance of planning at the regional level. Regional planning conferences or similar groups of local planning authorities will have a key role in advising on the most sustainable way of meeting the demand for new housing in their regions. Earlier this year, we consulted on a package of proposals for reforming Regional Planning Guidance (RPG). A key proposal is for RPG to include a regional transport strategy. Our proposals for improving RPG and promoting greater ownership have been widely welcomed. In the light of the responses to this consultation, we will publish draft guidance (PPG11) setting out the new arrangements in more detail, including the scope of the regional transport strategies and how they will be prepared.
Regional transport strategies
In England, regional planning conferences or similar groups of local authorities working with the Government Offices for the Regions, in partnership with RDAs, will have direct responsibility for preparing the new RPG in draft and for consulting widely on it. This replaces the current arrangement where the planning conferences simply give advice to the Secretary of State. It means that regional conferences will be responsible for the development of long term regional transport strategies, giving people a greater say in what happens in their region.

The conference's proposals will be discussed at a public examination- independently chaired - before going to the Secretary of State for final approval. To work effectively, these transport strategies will need to reflect our integrated transport policy. They will also need to be drawn up in close consultation with the relevant Regional Chamber, especially if it is a designated chamber4, and with representatives of passengers and other transport users. In approving RPG, the Secretary of State will need to be satisfied that the transport strategy does not conflict, without good local reason, with national policies.

The regional conferences will use RPG to integrate the planning of major new development at the regional level and the identification of regional transport investment and management priorities. In doing so, the conferences will need to consider including in RPG:


  • public transport accessibility criteria for regionally or sub-regionally significant levels or types of development, to be set out in development plan policies to guide the location of development;

  • guidance for development plans on the approach to be taken to standards for off-street car parking provision, relating these to accessibility by public transport;

  • a strategic steer on the role of airports and ports in the region in the light of national policy;

  • regional priorities for transport investment and management to support the regional strategy, including the role of trunk and local roads;

  • traffic management issues which require consideration either regionally or sub-regionally;

  • guidance to local authorities on the strategic context for introducing measures such as road user charging and parking levies.

In developing the regional strategy, conferences will also have to liaise closely with transport operators and infrastructure providers in their regions, the Highways Agency and the Strategic Rail Authority.

Regional Planning Guidance and Trunk Road Planning

  • to develop an effective integrated transport policy at the regional level, decisions about trunk road planning should be set in the context of the transport network as a whole;

  • the definition of long term regional priorities for transport improvement and management in Regional Planning Guidance must flow from an appraisal of the realistic options available and from an understanding of the role of transport in sustainable regional development;

  • we will look to conferences of local authorities to work with their regional partners to consider the objectives and, in broad terms, the priorities for managing and improving trunk roads which are key to delivering the regional strategy;

  • our investment strategy for trunk roads will be consistent with the priorities set out in Regional Planning Guidance.

Government Offices for the Region and the Highways Agency will contribute to the work of the planning conferences, including on trunk road issues, ensuring that the studies that emerge from the English Roads Review dovetail with the needs of the regional conferences.

Regional conferences will be expected to take account of our integrated transport policy, including national guidance on the role and nature of trunk roads, including the core network, and published proposals for improvement. The report of the Roads Review, the new PPG11 and a revision of PPG13 will provide guidance on these matters.

RPG will also need to take into account the implications at a regional level of EU policies, including the evolving European Spatial Development Perspective (ESDP). We are keen to see the completion of the ESDP and the promotion of the good practice it contains for considering the combined impact of policies, such as transport and the environment, on an area or region which transcends Member States' borders. The final document, reflecting consultation, will be produced in 1999.



Thames Gateway regeneration

  • to support regeneration in the Thames Gateway area, we agreed that the A13 Design, Build Finance and Operate (DBFO) project should go ahead;

  • the terms of the DBFO invitation to tender includes incentives to provide a good road service for buses and commercial vehicles without encouraging car commuters;

  • an integrated package of new river crossings, including better public transport links and local road crossings, could also help to stimulate regeneration and ease congestion. We are considering the options and the way forward so that decisions can be taken by the Greater London Authority.


Role of Regional Development Agencies
Our White Paper "Building Partnerships for Prosperity"5 said that the new Regional Development Agencies (RDAs) would have a role in influencing the development of integrated transport strategies. We see that role being secured through them being key partners in the preparation of Regional Planning Guidance.

The creation of RDAs will mark a step change in efforts to improve the economic and social well being of the regions. They will have powers to foster economic development and regeneration, promote business efficiency, investment and employment and contribute to sustainable development. They will inherit the regional regeneration programmes of English Partnerships and the Rural Development Commission and will take on the administration of the Single Regeneration Budget Challenge Fund. They will also be responsible for decisions on grants for site access roads to aid economic development.

Regional transport strategies will need to take account of RDA strategies for sustainable economic development and regeneration. Both strategies will be developed in close collaboration so that the transport implications of the economic strategy can be reflected in Regional Planning Guidance and vice versa. Regional Development Agencies will have an important role in identifying development opportunities and promoting the necessary infrastructure to support them. They will also want to take account of the contribution which ports and airports make in their regions.
Integrated transport in London
There is currently no single body in overall charge of co-ordinating transport in London. There are many different players- central Government, boroughs, nationalised industries, quangos, private sector operators, and a variety of ad hoc arrangements, but no one can pull all their initiatives together. In London this fragmentation is a serious obstacle to pursuing the integrated approach which we want to see.

That is why we propose to give a major transport role to the new Greater London Authority (GLA), headed by a directly elected Mayor. The Mayor will produce an integrated transport strategy for London, covering nearly seven million people who live there as well as the millions more who travel to work or visit the capital. This will be a wide-ranging strategy, covering all forms of transport to, from and within London. With responsibilities for strategic land use planning and economic development, the Mayor will be able to ensure that transport policy is integrated with these other important policies.



New arrangements for integration in London

  • integrating transport: the Mayor will produce a transport strategy covering all modes of travel to, from and within London. Responsibility for underground, bus and strategic roads will be brought together;

  • integration between transport and the environment: the Mayor will have a statutory duty to promote sustainable development, and specific environmental functions including the production of an air quality strategy for London, a duty to produce reports on London's contribution to national climate change targets and powers and duties in relation to noise;

  • integration of transport and land use planning: the Mayor will produce the spatial development strategy for London, covering all strategic land use planning issues, transport policy and provision, economic development and regeneration, housing, retail development, town centres, and protection and enhancement of the environment;

  • integration with other policies: the London Development Agency will be an arm of the GLA, enabling the Mayor to integrate policies for economic development with transport and planning polices. With an overview of both transport and the Police Authority's strategy, the Mayor will be uniquely placed to develop a vision of the traffic policing needs of London.

We have defined the responsibilities of the GLA in our White Paper "A Mayor and Assembly for London"6 so that it can focus on issues that need to be tackled on a London-wide basis. It will not assume responsibilities which can be discharged at the local level.

The transport strategy will be implemented through a new executive body, Transport for London (TfL), directly accountable to the Mayor. TfL will run or manage transport services in London on a day-to-day basis.

The Mayor's transport strategy will cover London-wide strategies for the bus and cycle priority network, and for freight, parking and walking. The London boroughs will frame local implementation plans to give effect to these strategies and the GLA will have powers to ensure that borough plans are in accordance with its overall strategy for London.

Our plans for powers to introduce road user charging and a levy on parking spaces (see later in this Chapter) will give the Mayor important tools for tackling congestion and air pollution, especially in central London. This would also generate extra revenue which could be used for the improvements in public transport that would be essential to cater for a significant modal shift in London. With these powers, and the direct responsibilities listed above, we believe that the Mayor will be able to formulate and deliver a truly integrated transport policy for London.

We are committed to devolving decisions to the most appropriate local level. We do not expect Government to interfere unless the Mayor's transport strategy is inconsistent with a published statement of our national transport policy, in a way that has an adverse impact beyond London. In these circumstances, the Government will have a reserve power to direct the Mayor to amend the strategy.


Investment in London Underground
Our radical and innovative public-private partnership for London Underground is intended to bring about some £7 billion of investment in the system over 15 years, whilst retaining a publicly owned and publicly accountable network. London Underground will continue to operate the network and will invite bids from contractors to modernise and maintain the infrastructure and trains. The elements of the existing system that passengers value, such as Travelcard, integrated ticketing and the high priority given to safety, will remain the responsibility of London Underground, whilst the main cause of complaints - long-standing underinvestment - will be addressed.

To meet the immediate investment needs of the Underground system, we have given London Transport an additional £365 million over the next two years for core Underground investment and for preparing the new public-private partnership. This will bring total investment in the current network to £1 billion over the next two years, allowing many important projects to go ahead.


Integrated transport in London-in practice
We want to use the next two years to build a strong foundation for the Mayor and GLA to tackle London's problems. London provides an excellent illustration of what integrated transport can mean in practice.


Integrated transport in London-in practice

Improvements for pedestrians


  • a key objective for the Traffic Director for London is to improve conditions for pedestrians. More than 300 new or improved crossings have been provided so far as part of the Red Route programme;


World Squares for All


  • aims to achieve better access and enjoyment of the ceremonial heart of London for pedestrians, visitors and tourists; and a better setting for the historic buildings and public spaces around Trafalgar Square, Whitehall, Parliament Square, balanced with the need to maintain effective bus operations and to avoid creating unacceptable levels of traffic congestion. A masterplan for the area has been produced. It includes proposals for:

  • pedestrianisation of parts of Trafalgar Square and Parliament Square;

  • a range of imaginative measures to enhance the setting and character of the whole area;

  • improving pedestrian access and safety in the Squares and on the surrounding streets.


The London Cycle Network


  • local authorities are developing a comprehensive cycle network across London providing safe, convenient routes incorporating cycle lanes, protected crossings and shared paths in open spaces and parks;

  • this also provides safer routes to schools and helps cyclists at major road junctions.


The London bus priority network (LBPN)


  • LBPN will comprise 540 miles of the most heavily used bus routes, being developed by the local authorities and London Transport;

  • involves some 1,200 new schemes such as bus lanes, bus stop clearways, measures to ensure that low-floor buses reach the kerb at bus stops and bus priority at traffic lights;

  • focus will be on completing entire bus routes which deliver benefits to passengers at the earliest date. Six whole routes have been identified for comprehensive improvement this year.


Improving transport interchange

  • major schemes underway include Croydon Tramlink's connections with East and West Croydon stations; Stratford Regional Station, linking the Jubilee Line to the Central Line, Docklands Light Railway and overground rail lines and the new bus station;

  • improvements are being made to bus access at Willesden Junction, Tottenham Hale and Seven Sisters stations and to bus/tube interchange at Wood Green station;

  • BAA has invested some £450 million in the Heathrow Express. The service will cut journey times from London to Heathrow airport to 15 minutes and is expected to carry some six million passengers in year one and to account for around 15% of airport passengers by 2001;

  • Docklands Light Railway integrates with other modes of transport (see map), the proposed extension to London City airport would, its promoters claim, offer a direct rail service with the potential to take a significant number of journeys off the road at a cost of some £35 million.


Travel information in London


  • London Transport's Travel Information Service provides;

  • 24-hour Call Centre telephone advice on timetables and itineraries for all modes;

  • Travel Information Centres at major locations such as mainline stations and elsewhere;

  • interactive terminals giving direct access to a computerised journey planning system at a number of trial locations in London, including shopping centres, bus stations, and tourist offices;

  • Countdown system provides 'real-time' information signs at the busiest bus stops to inform passengers when the next bus will arrive. It is planned to extend the system throughout London.


Traffic management and parking guidance
This guidance to London local authorities, the Traffic Director for London and the Highways Agency, which we published earlier this year, encourages:

  • a more strategic approach to parking in London, with a more determined use of parking charges and controls, such as Controlled Parking Zones;

  • greater emphasis on measures to assist buses, cyclists and pedestrians, including new aims for the Red Route Network;

  • recognition of the needs of all road users, especially people with disabilities or difficulty with walking;

  • better interchange between modes, especially from bus and car to rail and underground, and from public transport to walking.


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