Andy Murray, head of infrastructure at RSM, said:
‘In the age of short termism, it is refreshing to see Transport for the North (TfN) publish a 30-year investment plan. The plan is well founded on economic studies on the needs and benefits of a better-connected North and shows £100bn additional contribution to the North's economy.
‘Bringing civic and business leaders across the North together to align regional and local strategies is crucial to delivering the plan effectively; combined with the right investment model.
‘The plan requires £70bn of investment which is roughly £50 per person per year which is not a lot to ask for a more regular, quicker, punctual and uncrowded transport service. It is hoped that most, or all, of the investment will come from the Exchequer – much less than what’s been committed for road and rail schemes in the South.
‘However, the Treasury’s method of evaluating transport schemes within its Green Book guide continues to disadvantage schemes in the North. Let’s hope TfN’s investment plan is judged on an absolute rather than relative basis; or that the Green Book guidance is changed in time for when these schemes require approval. Otherwise, the North will need to find other ways of funding it. I wonder if those who regularly travel in the North would be willing to contribute an extra £50 each (either directly or indirectly) for a proper transport network that the North deserves?’