Following five years of technical work and stakeholder engagement Transport for the South East’s Strategic Investment Plan received final approval from their Partnership Board on 13 March 2023.
The plan sets out a vision for the south-east region with priorities to decarbonise the transport system, level up left behind communities and facilitate sustainable economic growth in the south-east between now and 2050.
This ambitious plan forecasts a total capital cost of over £45billion over 27 years and interventions that once implemented could generate; 21,000 new jobs, an additional £4 billion growth in GVA each year by 2050, 1.4 mega tonnes less CO2 equivalent emitted, 500,000 more rail trips a day, 1.5million more trips taken by bus, mass transit and ferry, and take roughly 4million car trips a day off the south east’s roads.
Planning for a sustainable transport network
Cllr Rodney Chambers, Medway Council’s Portfolio Holder for Inward Investment, Strategic Regeneration and Partnerships, said: “We are pleased to support this plan which highlights how crucial planning for a sustainable transport network is. Although the investment plan covers the whole south-east, it is incredibly important for Medway.”
Developed by the south-east, for the south-east
Cllr Keith Glazier, Chair of Transport for the South East said: “This evidence based investment is a once in a generation opportunity to set out a sustainable transport network that recognises the importance of major transport corridors across the south east. Corridors that are fundamental to our economy and our communities. This plan is the result of five years of partnership working, it truly is a plan developed by the south-east, for the south-east. Following approval by our Partnership Board we have submitted the plan to the Secretary of State for the Department for Transport with a request for it to be considered as future investment decisions are made. We could not be more grateful for the insight, support and challenge shown by our partners, and the Department for Transport in the development of this plan.”
The Strategic Investment Plan promises to not only deliver economic benefits to the whole of the south-east region but to also make a material contribution towards net zero carbon. It supports a reduction in the need to travel by encouraging integrated planning and a shift to more sustainable modes of travel for both passengers and freight.
It recognises the importance of accessible, affordable, integrated, reliable and attractive public transport, that is fit for purpose and have ensured it is at the core of the Strategic Investment Plan. The transport body promises to work with local authorities and operators to provide better-connected and accessible multi-modal journeys with users easily able to walk, wheel or cycle for the first and last miles of their journeys.
As a member of the Transport for the South-East Partnership Board we have worked closely throughout the development of this investment plan, offering insights into the needs of our local area and our residents and businesses. As Transport for the South-East turn their attention to delivery we will continue to work with them to make this plan a reality.