The Highways Maintenance Efficiency Programme (HMEP) has launched a new document that outlines a future vision for better roads and highways.
The document which is entitled ‘Improving highways efficiency: a 2020 vision for better roads and highways’ explains how the condition of the UK’s roads can be transformed by the sector working to deliver 30% greater efficiencies and improved services to make them fit for the future.
HMEP, who currently work with over 75% of local highway authorities, believe that there are still greater opportunities and significant savings to be realised. If greater efficiencies are delivered this will then allow local highway authorities to plan and deliver improved roads, more affordably.
Leading local authorities are already reaping the benefits of increased efficiencies through HMEP. Walsall Council has improved pothole prevention while saving over £400,000 per annum and Surrey County Council combined a supply chain review with a strategic peer review helping them to realise £16m savings, as well as improved service quality, 10-year warranties and an increased investment in local skills.
The document has been developed with people and organisations from across the highways sector who told HMEP there are major challenges that lie ahead and that budgets for highway services are going to become tighter and the need to deliver better roads, more affordably, will not go away.
HMEP believe the real challenge lies in the sector changing its approach so it can find greater efficiencies while transforming and improving roads and services.
Sue Percy, chief executive of the Chartered Institute of Highways & Transportation, said: “By embracing the principles and applications behind HMEP, the public and private sector can work together to deliver the highway network needed to support economic growth.”
Tony Gates, chairman of the Highways Term Maintenance Association (HTMA), added: “The highways sector is ripe for transformational change, but we will only get there with clear, ambitious targets and truly collaborative working.”
HMEP are working with The Department for Transport (DfT) to deliver a roadshow of seven events across England from January 2014 to explain more about the efficient funding and delivery of highways management and to discuss the ambition of the HMEP annual plan for 2014/15.
To download PDF version of the annual plan click here.