RIA North responds to TfN’s Strategic Transport Plan consultation
RIA North, the voice of the rail supply community in the North of England, has today submitted its response to Transport for the North’s (TfN) consultation on the Strategic Transport Plan. This plan sets out the vision, ambitions, and strategic priorities for transport in the North of England.
RIA North has welcomed the publication of the plan and has recommended a series of steps that TfN could take to enhance the blueprint further. These include:
- A strategy that focuses on developing a sustainable transport supply chain that would create new jobs, a skills legacy and export capability for the North.
- Aligning transport investment plans with other transport bodies across the UK.
- Encouraging the use of the Early Contractor Involvement (ECI) model as an engagement model with the wider supply chain for TfN rail investment.
- Introducing specification and buying strategies that do not penalise low carbon solutions which are a little more expensive or new.
- A potential strategy to enhance the uptake of apprenticeships, particularly within small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and micro businesses that do not fall under the purview of the apprenticeship levy.
Commenting, David Clarke, RIA North Lead said:
“We very much welcome the publication of TfN’s Strategic Transport Plan, which chimes with many of the strategic aims of RIA North. There is much to welcome in the plan, including an ambitious overall vision, support for the completion of major projects in full, and an acknowledgement of the need for accelerated rail decarbonisation – including through a rolling programme of electrification.
“RIA North’s consultation response is an offer to make an excellent plan even better. Our recommendations would create a more dynamic, vibrant and effective rail supply chain which would be better prepared to deliver TfN’s priorities. We trust that these recommendations will be positively received”.