Review of possible cost savings in Northern Rail franchise

Steer Davies Gleave report (44 pages, PDF) for the Department for Transport investigating possible ways of saving money in the Northern Rail franchise. The report's main findings are that "three areas of the Northern review have emerged as providing potential for optimising the overall value for money of the franchise: i. Fare increases; ii. Reduced service specifications; iii. Re-profiling Network Rail's renewal expenditure across the franchise". But the first two ideas "have significant net negative economic benefits and would run counter to the thrust of the DfT's transport and wider social and economic policies". Cutting Network Rail renewals is also considered problematic as "any infrastructure renewal saving will not be 'captured' until after the next regulatory periodic review in 2008-09 without specific agreement being negotiated between DfT, Network Rail and the ORR" and "the practicality of route closures is untested under the new legislation". The Government has announced that there will be no change to the franchise.

For further information or advice please contact Franck Latrémolière.

Filed under DfT, Public transport.

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