TfN unveils £70bn plan to transform North economy

WCN Editorial Team 1 Feb 2019 EUROPE TRANSPORT INFRASTRUCTURE

Transport for the North (TfN) has unveiled draft proposals valued at £70bn for northern infrastructure for the next three decades to transform the region’s economy.

The Strategic Transport Plan (STP) and the Investment Programme set forth by TfN are aimed at rebalancing decades of underinvestment and transform the lives of people in the North.

The STP explains how £70bn of investment to 2050 could contribute towards an additional £100bn in economic growth for the North’s economy and create 850,000 extra jobs.

This is the first time that the civic and business leaders of the North have spoken with one voice on behalf of the region’s 15 million people, as indicated by the STP and Investment Programme, laying out a new pipeline of transport interventions.

The £70bn pipeline intends to better connect the North, with a short, medium and long-term plan for investment, transform connectivity for people and businesses and make it easier to move goods to, from and within the North.

The plan calls for an increase in spending on strategic transport by around £50 per person in the North each year to 2050.

It also includes programmes such as Northern Powerhouse Rail; upgraded and new major roads; enhancements to the rail network; and the continued roll-out of smart ticketing.

Supporting the local and regional transport strategies, the vision promotes new, low-carbon ways of travelling.

Subject to approval of the plans at a meeting of the TfN board on 7 February in Chester, they will be launched on 11 February 2019 in Sheffield at TfN Inaugural Conference.

From then on, the proposals will become TfN’s statutory advice to government on the ongoing priorities for enhancing sustainable and inclusive connectivity across the North.

TfN CEO Barry White said: “The Strategic Transport Plan is a hugely important document for the North. It is our vision for a prosperous pan-Northern future and outlines how investment in transport could transform our economy.

“Our Investment Programme outlines how an additional investment of just £50 per person in the North, per year, could play a part in unlocking a £100 billion increase in economic activity and create 850,000 new jobs.

“For the people of the North, this will mean more choice over where they live and work, access to higher quality jobs and better connections to friends and families.

“It will mean our businesses have more opportunity to collaborate, trade and grow in a sustainable way.

“This final Plan will be a statutory document written by the North, for the North, and will be our blueprint to deliver transformational change and leave a legacy for future generations.”

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Image: Part of the M60 in North West Manchester. Photo: Courtesy of Whatlep / Wikimedia Commons.

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