To consider and endorse, or make recommendations to the Cabinet Member for Planning, Highways, Transport & Waste, on the proposed adoption and publication of Developing our Approach to Asset Management in Highways - 2018/19 – 2020/21 to maximise Incentive Fund resource.
Roger Wilkin (Director of Highways, Transportation and Waste), Andrew Loosemore (Head of Highways Asset Management) and Alan Casson (Senior Asset Manager) were in attendance for this item.
a. Andrew Loosemore said that the £1bn figure was a projection on where KCC would be in ten years’ time in terms of road maintenance backlog if the current investment levels remained the same. By introducing a more detailed approach the document was able to describe the current condition of the asset groups, outcome the trends going forward based on current resource levels and then estimate the resource levels required in order to maintain assets in a steady state condition. He reminded Members that this was a national issue and that there was a £12bn backlog in road maintenance across England and Wales (excluding London).
b. In relation to Members ‘concerns around maintenance of pavements due to mismanaged trees, Roger Wilkin said that this was a historical issue and when requests from developers were received to line streets with trees, the request was often negotiated due to the pressures they presented if not managed correctly.
c. In response to street works, Roger Wilkin assured Members that utility companies managed a heavy workload and that all work should be carried out to a high standard. If that quality was compromised, appropriate action would be taken to ensure full rectification.
d. Andrew Loosemore said that the soft estate did not hold any asset value in terms of Whole of Government Accounts’ methodology of understanding valuing highway assets. Some of the soft landscape was included within the land element which totalled £13bn. Members were informed that its inclusion within the figures was primarily for information purposes to give a complete picture of all assets that have to be maintained.