28 October 2016

Ahead of the Chancellor’s Autumn Statement, Alan Mackenzie, Chairman of the Asphalt Industry Alliance (AIA), makes the case for investing in local roads:

“The link between infrastructure investment and economic growth is well established but long term underfunding means that the local road network continues to deteriorate at a faster rate than it can be repaired.

“Ten years ago, our ALARM survey warned against putting off the investment needed today until tomorrow. Local authority highways engineers told us then that it would take 10.9 years to get their roads back into a reasonable condition. This year, they told us the backlog was 14 years. “The age of the network and the increased volume and weight of vehicles – not to mention the effect of wetter winters – threatens the resilience our roads. Unless action is taken, we face the real prospect of a local road network that is not fit for purpose.”

Notes to editors
The Asphalt Industry Alliance (AIA) is a partnership between the Mineral Products Association and Eurobitume UK. It draws on the knowledge and experience of both organisations to increase awareness of the asphalt industry and to promote the uses and benefits of asphalt. The AIA produces the ALARM survey to provide a detailed picture of the condition of the local road network and enable insightful analysis of road maintenance and funding issues. This year’s ALARM survey reported that Local Authority highways departments estimated that the time required, given adequate funding and resources, to bring the network up to scratch would be 14 years. In ALARM 2006 the figure reported was 10.9 years. ALARM 2016 reported that the estimated one-time catch up cost is £11.8 billion.

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