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ICE's Delivering a Northern Infrastructure Strategy

07 September 2017

Devolution enables the North to take greater responsibility for the planning and delivery of its infrastructure networks, but it is important that a coherent strategy is put in place to ensure that this is done effectively.

The report recommends that a Council of the North is established to undertake this role alongside a series of specific interventions for improving the provision of the North’s core economic infrastructure networks.

Full recommendations

Taking control – leadership for the North

  1. To oversee the delivery of the Northern Powerhouse vision, we support the creation of a Council of the North with representation of LEPs alongside metro Mayors and Leaders of local authorities.
  2. To ensure the North’s balanced growth and improved productivity, a Northern Infrastructure Strategy should be developed.
  3. A Northern Spatial Plan should be produced to guide and coordinate integrated infrastructure development.
  4. The provision of lifelong learning and development should be co-ordinated to ensure the North has the future skills required by employers and to deliver its infrastructure investment programme.
  5. To kick-start the North’s economic resurgence, central Government should increase the level of infrastructure investment and empower Transport for the North to determine transport investment priorities.
  6. So the North can, over time, fund growth from its own resources, central Government should devolve sufficient revenue raising and borrowing powers.
  7. The North must adopt a more proactive and ambitious approach to encouraging private investment.

Investing in our future – strategic objectives for the North

  1. The North should fully develop its specialisations in renewables and new energy technologies to maintain its position as the country’s energy powerhouse.
  2. Transport for the North must develop programmes that enhance network integration and connectivity, enable economic development and ensure that the region is ready for the arrival of HS2.
  3. Transport for the North should champion the adoption of new technologies in both passenger and freight transport, including the digital railway, autonomous vehicles and mobility as a service.
  4. The North must acquire and maintain best in class digital infrastructure with complete geographic coverage to unlock economic growth and enhance the delivery of infrastructure across the region.
  5. To address the North’s housing shortage, local authorities should put in place standard approaches to assessing need and have access to flexible funding arrangements for new developments.

ICE's Delivering a Northern Infrastructure Strategy

Content type: Policy

Authors: ICE

  • Ben Goodwin, lead policy manager at ICE
  • Gavin Miller, policy manger at ICE