With Brexit on the horizon, Mayor of London Sadiq Khan is calling for a significant increase in the amount of infrastructure investment nationwide.
Those sentiments coincided with a meeting between the Mayor and Lord Andrew Adonis, Chairman of the National Infrastructure Commission (NIC) – an impartial organisation responsible for advising central government on matters of infrastructure.
During the confab, Mr Khan explained that infrastructure investment should not be seen as a ‘zero-sum game’, wherein one region loses out to another. All parts of the UK will need transport and infrastructure investment to better support economic growth and job creation as Great Britain exits the European Union – a consideration that Lord Adonis is all too aware of.
For London this means Crossrail 2 – a brand new rail link for South East England that will bolster rail capacity throughout the capital by 10%. In July, Transport Secretary Chris Grayling proffered his support for the project and the Mayor is now working alongside central government to ensure a scheme that is affordable for both London and the UK.
According to Sadiq Khan: “Increasing investment in new infrastructure is essential to supporting new growth and jobs in the decades ahead, particularly as Britain leaves the European Union.
“I will continue to put the case to government that good quality, modern infrastructure – including new roads, railways and state-of-the-art broadband and mobile connectivity – is crucial if this country is to remain a global economic powerhouse.”
During the summer months, NIC outlined 12 key infrastructure decisions that need to be taken forward across the country. These included the next stage of High Speed 2, connecting Birmingham, Crewe, Manchester and Leeds; High Speed 3, linking the cities of the North; Crossrail 2 and more funding for broadband and 5G mobile.
“Investing in good quality infrastructure projects offers clear economic benefits and can transform the lives of entire communities,” concluded Lord Adonis. “While work is well underway on HS2 and Crossrail, we cannot lose sight of the need to make real progress on the next round of major projects.
“Whether Crossrail 2 or High Speed 3, I’ve been clear that Brexit talks and a hung Parliament must not delay the decisions needed to get crucial infrastructure projects going across the country, and it is good to see the government and mayors across the country working together to drive all of these forward.”