Cameron considers plans to privatise road network

Grant Prior 10 years ago
Share

David Cameron is considering plans to privatise parts of the road network.

The move comes as the Prime Minister looks to speed-up private investment into the UK’s infrastructure and open the door for more toll roads.

He will compare the move with the privatisation of the water industry by Margaret Thatcher.

In a major speech today Cameron is expected to say: “Why is it that other infrastructure – for example water – is funded by private sector capital through privately owned, independently regulated, utilities……but roads in Britain call on the public finances for funding?

“We need to look urgently at the options for getting large-scale private investment into the national roads network – from sovereign wealth funds, pension funds, and other investors.

“That’s why I have asked the Department for Transport and the Treasury to carry out a feasibility study of new ownership and financing models for the national roads system and to report progress to me in the Autumn.”

Cameron ruled out the use of tolls on existing roads but is due to say: “Road tolling is one option – but we are only considering this for new, not existing, capacity. For example, we’re looking at how improvements to the A14 could be part funded through tolling.”

The Prime minister will call for the cash to “widen pinch points, add lanes to motorways by using the hard shoulder to increase capacity and dual overcrowded A-roads.”

The speech has been welcomed by construction experts.

Institution of Civil Engineers Director General, Nick Baveystock, said:“It is encouraging to see further evidence of Government’s commitment to infrastructure forming a central plank of the plan for growth and some decisive steps to secure long term, targeted investment not only for important infrastructure projects, but for networks as a whole.

“Our national road network is a valuable and essential asset that relies on continued investment to function.

“Government is right to investigate more radical funding models and consider how infrastructure investment might be better managed.

“This will be extremely important in ensuring potential investors get a predictable rate of return and we welcome Government’s imagination and ambition in tackling this.”

CECA director of external affairs Alasdair Reisner said: “The Government has shown considerable commitment to improving the UK’s essential infrastructure, recognising that in doing so it will help kickstart recovery in the economy”

“We believe that this feasibility study offers the chance for sensible consideration of the options for private sector funding of road improvements.

“However experience from other sectors has shown that such major changes can lead to delays in the delivery of work programmes.

“We would have concerns about the impact on the roads network should there be any hiatus in activity as new models are implemented”

Latest news

Pagabo names £1.6bn civils framework winners

Forty eight firms secure spots on new civils and infrastructure framework
1 day ago

£1.25bn Stonehenge tunnel job winner revealed

Spanish, Italian, and Austrian JV scoops A303 Amesbury to Berwick Down scheme
2 days ago

Altrad swoops for Doosan Babcock

Over 4,000 staff will transfer to the fast-expanding industrial services group
1 day ago

Suspended jail sentences after fatal roof fall

Court sentences two men after hearing of safety failures on over-cladding job
1 day ago

McAleer & Rushe on track for record £425m revenue

Revenue and profit return to pre-pandemic level as focus grows on high-rise flats
2 days ago

Domis on the hunt for subcontractors and suppliers across Cornwall

Contractor hosting meet the buyer event to set-up local supply chain for string of major projects
2 days ago

Lendlease £140m hospital claim to hit High Court

Cramlington hospital trust claims for new temporary building while remediation works carried out
2 days ago

Balfour bags £50m Piccadilly Line upgrade

First award under latest London Underground High Voltage Power framework
2 days ago

Cash runs out on HS2 old Curzon Street station refurb

Laing O'Rourke/Murphy JV halts work on historic station renovation
3 days ago

MPs call for cut in building demolitions to save carbon

Watchdog MPs set out urgent plan to prioritise retrofit and reuse of buildings over new build
2 days ago

Structure Tone stems losses as order book grows

Fit out specialist racks-up £4m loss but is confident of turnaround this year after restructuring
3 days ago

Construction leaders launch inflation busting taskforce

All sides of industry urged to work together rather than row over price hikes
3 days ago

HG Construction names next chief executive

Adam Quinn, son of one of the MBO founders, to take the reins in July
3 days ago

Lendlease Stratford IQL blue towers approved

35- and 14-storey hexagonal blocks will provide 350 flats
3 days ago

Track worker killed by train was controller of site safety

Distracted rail worker "lost awareness of his position relative to the line the train approached on"
3 days ago

MechFS went down owing £9.5m to supply chain

Subcontractors left holding millions in worthless invoices
4 days ago

HG Construction profit jumps 50% to £25m

Multi-storey homes and student accommodation jobs drive sales to record £243m
4 days ago

Go-ahead for Newcastle’s largest build to rent project

Work to start on 14-storey flats complex in the autumn
3 days ago

Contractors wanted for £288m Northumbrian Water frameworks

Ten lots up for grabs under latest major civils deal
3 days ago

Plans in for 142-room Exeter net zero hotel

RED Construction to build first of hotel developer's planned chain of net zero hotels
3 days ago

Rail workers vote to strike over maintenance job cuts fears

Network could grind to a halt next month
3 days ago

Race for £100m Immingham ferry terminal job

AB Ports aims to start work in mid 2023
4 days ago

Sisk wins Stockport £60m Weir Mill restoration

Work to start next month on 250 flats scheme
5 days ago

Developer swoops for 1,000-flats landmark Leeds site

Revised plans to be submitted by the end of the year for start soon after
5 days ago

Dominvs seals £173m funding for 713-bed student job

HG Construction to start major Hammersmith student complex in November
5 days ago

Briefings start for £1bn Midland Mainline Electrification plan

Market engagement starts for next seven sections covering 139km route to Sheffield
4 days ago

Forterra pushes back £27m factory refurb plan

Supply chain shortages hit project as brick prices rose another 12% last month
4 days ago

Speedy Hire results slowed down by KPMG

Hire giant left "frustrated and disappointed" by delay request from auditor
5 days ago

London office starts set to surge over next 6 months

Deloitte Crane Survey predicts jump in starts in Capital despite high building costs
6 days ago

Fit-out firm BW Workplace slips into the red

£5.2m backdated R&D tax credit deal lifts after tax performance
6 days ago

Contractor services