Executive Recruitment

Strategic Transport Plan

The success of the UK in the global marketplace, and the achievement of the Government’s Industrial Strategy, depends on the transformation of the economy of the North of England.

The economic gap between the North and the national average necessitates a radical change in the North’s economy, which is home to internationally regarded and highly productive assets, expertise, research and businesses.

The conclusions of the Northern Powerhouse Independent Economic Review set out the need to support growth of the North’s businesses and trade. Delivery of economic growth will require investment and improved performances in a number of critical areas, especially skills, innovation and inward investment, alongside transport infrastructure and services.

Building on the Northern Powerhouse Independent Economic Review, Transport for the North (TfN) has made significant progress in developing the case for strategic transport investment across the North.

TfN, with its Partners, is developing a Strategic Transport Plan and accompanying long-term Investment Programme, so that people and businesses can see a firm commitment to create a stronger, more diverse and resilient economy.

When finally adopted later this year, the Strategic Transport Plan will be TfN’s principal policy document and the plan of the statutory body. The Strategic Transport Plan, and its supporting evidence, will inform how HM Government, Network Rail, Highways England and HS2 Ltd. can work with Partners in the North to deliver investment that can transform the economy.

A copy of the Draft Strategic Transport Plan is available by following this link. 


Current programmes

Northern Powerhouse Rail

Northern Powerhouse Rail is our ambitious plan for a rail network that will provide fast, frequent and reliable links between the North’s biggest city regions and its largest airport.

Integrated and Smart Travel

Our Smart North programme will allow passengers to travel quickly and easily on public transport around the North. Our ‘tap-in, tap-out’ system will enable fast and stress-free payment with a ‘fair-price promise’ to ensure they’re getting the best value travel and a real-time journey planning system to keep passengers on the move.

Strategic Road Studies

We are working with DfT and Highways England to inform priorities for road investments in the North, from 2020 onwards. We are also working on three major Strategic Road Studies, looking at improvements to Northern Trans-Pennine routes, transforming journeys around the M60 North West Quadrant and the possibility of a Trans-Pennine Tunnel linking Greater Manchester and Sheffield City Region.

Rail Franchising

The Northern and TransPennine rail franchises are now managed in partnership between TfN and the Department for Transport. This ground-breaking devolution decision is driving transformational investment in the region’s railways over the next five years.

Freight and Logistics

Moving goods around the North is imperative to building a transformed economy. Currently, many of the goods destined for the North or exported from the North are shipped through Southern ports or airports. Transporting goods effectively into, out of and around the North would boost both sustainability and business.

International Connectivity

If the North’s economy is to compete on the international stage it needs direct links to the rest of the world. Our International Connectivity Commission has brought together business leaders to make recommendations on the air and port links needed to grow the Northern Powerhouse.

Our Business Plan for 2018/19 provides further information on our current work programme and the progress to date, a copy can be found here.

Challenges Ahead

The need to improve the North’s transport infrastructure is now well understood by our Partners. Our work is focused on establishing the solutions needed and the most effective means of delivery. This requires Transport for the North to provide the collective civic and business voice needed to plan and secure the required investment.

Our objectives over the next 12 months are focused on the following:-

  • Delivering the Strategic Transport Plan and Investment Programme
  • Continuing work on a programme of Strategic Development Corridors for pan-Northern transport interventions, developing a Strategic Outline Business Case for each corridor that will benefit passengers and freight.
  • Further developing our freight and logistics transport analysis, identifying key priorities for investment and informing future programmes for the strategic road and rail networks.
  • Developing the Strategic Outline Business Case (SOBC) for Northern Powerhouse Rail by December 2018.
  • Completing the design of an Integrated and Smart Travel service, defining overall procurement and an implementation strategy. Continuing to promote the programme and securing buy-in from a wide range of stakeholders.
  • Working with the Department for Transport we will progress the management and development of rail franchises in the North.

Our Business Plan for 2018/19 provides further information on our current work programme and the progress to date, a copy can be found here.

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