Office of Rail and Road Assess Highways England with Positive Results

The Office of Rail and Road, with its chief executive, Joanna Whittington, has released its overall assessment on the performance and initiatives of Highways England with generally positive results. According to the ORR, Highways England has shown a good beginning when it comes to delivering its promise of a £15 billion-worth investment on the country’s road networks by the years 2020 to 2021. 

The promise of £15 billion investment in the UKs road before 2021 is being delivered on schedule

The promise of £15 billion investment in the UKs road before 2021 is being delivered on schedule

The assessment done by the Office of Rail and Road on the performance of Highways England has also shown that the organisation, although making great strides on its projects, still needs to implement and push through with more stringent and robust planning processes within the organisation to make sure that all its current (and future) goals and objectives are met.


The results of the assessment done by ORR

In Parliament on the 13th of July, ORR laid down its ‘Annual Assessment of Highways England’ for the period of April 2015 until March 2016. The specific details of the assessment include a finding that there has been a decrease in the number of individuals killed or injured in the past year. But the report also states that there needs to be regular focus given in regards to this so that Highways England’s target of a 40% decrease in killings and injuries will be achieved by the year 2020.

The assessment also states that Highways England has managed to exceed its goals and targets when it comes to maintaining the availability of networks, clearing up incidents on roads and motorways, and helping maintain road surface quality. In addition, the assessment reveals that Highways England was able to stick with its target for funding and has not exceeded its spending budget for 2015 to 2016.

Furthermore, the Office of Rail and Road adds in the report that Highways England has made good progress when it comes to its environmental plans and strategies, which also includes its plan for better biodiversity.


What Highways England needs to focus on in the next year

Along with the positive results, however, the report also states what Highways England needs to focus on in the next year. This would include making improvements to the delivery of capital investment and making sure that it is fully capable of the proper management of its programmes and projects. Highways England also needs to improve its transparency (especially in regards to its performance and plans) as well as improve the quality of its data. The ORR also recommended that Highways England already begin setting up plans for its strategy for road investment for the years 2020 to 2025.

The ORR’s chief executive, Joanna Whittington, confirms that Highways England has been able to achieve its targets for performance and is right on point with its plans for investment, although she adds that most of Highways England’s targets are still scheduled after 2020. 

Posted on 15 Aug 2016 in News

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