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RTPI response to the National Infrastructure Commission's interim National Infrastructure Assessment

The Royal Town Planning Institute (RTPI) welcomes the opportunity to provide evidence to the National Infrastructure Commission’s consultation on the interim National Infrastructure Assessment: Congestion, Capacity, Carbon: Priorities for National Infrastructure.

The RTPI is broadly supportive of the interim National Infrastructure Assessment (NIA) from the National Infrastructure Commission. Historic infrastructure choices in the UK have been sub-optimal due to the ad hoc nature of project justification, a lack of mechanisms for considering the cumulative impact of infrastructure decisions, and a failure to properly consider the transformative nature of infrastructure investment. Meanwhile, successive policies and strategies from government have often failed to account for their impacts on different parts of the country, or combined to produce unintended spatial consequences. As such, the ‘threats’ of congestion, lack of capacity and carbon, and the seven key priorities set out by the Commission, provide a much improved framework by which to meet the Commission’s overarching objective, which is to “inject vision and purpose into how we plan, fund, deliver and operate the networks which underpin our economy and society”.

We note that the final NIA, due to be published summer 2018, will contain a strategy for addressing each of these seven priorities. For these to be successful, we believe there are several overarching issues that need to be addressed in the final NIA.

The response emphasise the spatial dimensions of the Commission's scenarios and calls for a dynamic approach to assessing infrastructure need. It also calls for a clear cooperation protocol between the Commission and the devolved governments.

Click here to read our response

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