Commenting on the Chancellor’s Autumn Budget, Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE) Head of Policy and Public Affairs Chris Richards said:
“We are pleased to see investment in the country’s key infrastructure, with a package for the second Road Investment Strategy of £25.3 billion for 2020-2025. However, it should also be remembered that as we move towards a largely electric vehicle fleet, the government must think about other forms of revenue to pay for major road development and maintenance. A pay-as-you-go road charging scheme should be considered, as ICE recommended in its recent State of the Nation, for the nation’s busiest roads to ensure the long-term security of revenue for continued maintenance and upgrades.
“Keeping local roads safe and useable for the wider public must also be a priority. The government’s commitment of £420 million for local highways authorities to tackle immediate issues before the end of the year will be welcomed by local authorities and those who have seen the state of their roads decline as budgets get tightened. However, this is a small dent in the significant funding gap identified by the National Infrastructure Commission for local roads and should be seen as just the beginning of efforts to further improve local roads.”