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30.04.13

GMRAPS launches to control local street works

Transport for Greater Manchester (TfGM) has launched the Greater Manchester Road Activity Permits Scheme (GMRAPS) in partnership with the Greater Manchester Combined Authority.

The scheme will coordinate road and street works across ten councils, managed by a central unit. Any organisation wishing to carry out construction will have to apply and pay for a permit in advance.

Issuing permits will improve journey times and reliability on the roads, reducing the economic impact of congestion. The public will also see improved information about road works, including advance warning and a clear indication of the duration of the work.

The permits will pay for any administration costs, making the scheme cost-neutral.

Local transport minister Norman Baker said: “I am pleased that Greater Manchester now has the power and the freedom to take greater control of how its road works are organised. Permit schemes have already shown in places like Kent that they will not only help to reduce local congestion, but also provide a better service to drivers, cyclists and passengers.”

Lord Peter Smith, chair of the Greater Manchester Combined Authority, said: “This is another first for Greater Manchester, and one that will benefit all road users – drivers, cyclists and pedestrians.

“Through tighter controls and improved coordination across all ten districts we expect to cut travel times, keep down fuel costs and make our roads safer for all road users.

“We will also save the economy millions of pounds every year by reducing the impact of congestion on local businesses. Reduced delays will mean less harmful CO2 emissions from slow moving traffic, meaning a better environment for everyone.”

Cllr Andrew Fender, chair of the Transport for Greater Manchester Committee, said: “This marks a new culture – rather than simply being informed of road works, we will now be in a position to give permissions and set restrictions for the benefit of all road users.

“All organisations planning street works will have to plan ahead and be efficient in their delivery – or face penalties. I look forward to seeing real benefits for all road users across Greater Manchester soon.”

Tell us what you think – have your say below, or email us directly at opinion@publicsectorexecutive.com

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