London roads backlog hits £1bn

04/06/2019
Dominic Browne

The road maintenance backlog in London has hit more than £1bn for the first time, as the capital’s boroughs concede they are presiding over a state of managed decline.

In the third annual ‘State of the city’ report, conducted by Atkins on behalf of London Councils and the London Technical Advisers Group, the total highways maintenance backlog is estimated to be £1.02bn up from £907m.

”Local
 

The survey covers roads managed by London’s boroughs, which are responsible for 95% of the capital’s roads, as well as pavements, street lighting, drainage and other associated structures

While there may be some debate over the figures, the actual total is likely to be much higher as there are large gaps in the data.

In this year’s survey, 27 out 33 highway authorities, including the City of London, responded to questionnaire and the total figure does not cover trees or drainage. To put this in perspective, Hammersmith and Fulham Council alone is estimated to have around 17,000 trees.

Of those responding there is a wide variety of condition data coverage. Tower Hamlets, Newham, Greenwich, Kingston upon Thames and Harrow only have between 45% and 56% condition data coverage, with Sutton and Islington on 56% to 67% and Bromley, Lambeth Brent and Haringey on between 67% and 78%.

Senior figures in LoTAG laid the blame squarely on the lack of funding.

London local authorities expect to see core funding from government reduced by 63% in real terms over the decade to 2020. This equates to around £4bn less funding to spend on essential services in the capital.

According to the State of the City report, the current network spend is £300.78m a year, compared to an annual maintenance need of £352.17m demonstrating the uphill struggle authorities are faced with.

Councils fund the maintenance of their own local roads, while they also receive funding through Transport for London for key routes in their areas.

Ian Hawthorn of the ‎London Borough of Hammersmith & Fulham and LoTAG) co-chair, said: ‘Under the principal road funding [from TfL under Local Implementation Plans] footways have never been included. It’s only roads that are funded by TFL. We are under pressure in every area; spend, need and backlog. It’s the same message we had last year. The challenges are just getting bigger. We have a massive backlog.

‘We re trying to cope with we are trying to do that in an environment where there is not the money to do what we need to do.

‘Trees are like a hidden asset that no one walks about but they still need to be maintained. Drainage is another one. Gulleys are a major expense. It’s not a great story. We need help to maintain the assets in London.

‘The amount of pressure we have. But actually we are stepping up to the mark and maintain the asset as best as we can thing to find new ways to become more efficient.’

Highways jobs

Street Cleansing Operative Driver (Large Goods Vehicles)

Redbridge London Borough Council
£22,377 to £23,607
We are looking to recruit staff for both our day service and evening service. Redbridge, London (Greater)
Recruiter: Redbridge London Borough Council

Senior Environmental Health Practitioner (Pollution)

Redbridge London Borough Council
£39,774.00 - £42,684.00
This is an excellent opportunity for individual who is looking to gain management experience.  Redbridge, London (Greater)
Recruiter: Redbridge London Borough Council

Senior Policy Planner

London Borough of Richmond upon Thames and London Borough of Wandsworth
£32,643 – £45,704 depending on skills
Are you looking for working arrangements that enhance your work-life balance? London (Greater)
Recruiter: London Borough of Richmond upon Thames and London Borough of Wandsworth

Strategic Director Environment and Climate Change

Kirklees Metropolitan Council
£119,940 to £131,935
A decade of investment invites the opportunity of a decade! Kirklees, West Yorkshire
Recruiter: Kirklees Metropolitan Council

Senior Environmental Health Officer (Housing Lead)

Mole Valley District Council
£37,821 - £42,329
An exciting opportunity for a Senior Environmental Health Officer to join our forward thinking Environmental Health Partnership Oxted, Surrey
Recruiter: Mole Valley District Council

Head of Operations

Rossendale Borough Council
£49,408 - £52,899
The Head of Operations is a key leader in the Senior Management Team. Rossendale, Lancashire
Recruiter: Rossendale Borough Council

Senior Engineer (Development Control)

Wrexham County Borough Council
£36,876 - £39,782 per annum
We are looking to appoint a suitably experienced and qualified candidate to work within the Contracts and Engineering team Wrexham (Wrecsam)
Recruiter: Wrexham County Borough Council

Strategic Director Growth and Regeneration

Kirklees Metropolitan Council
£119,940 to £131,935
A decade of investment invites the opportunity of a decade! Kirklees, West Yorkshire
Recruiter: Kirklees Metropolitan Council

Funeral Operative (As and When)

Brent Council
£24,462 - £26,274 p.a. inc. (pro-rata)
The person will not need previous experience in funeral services as full training will be given but experience would be an advantage. Brent, London (Greater)
Recruiter: Brent Council

Senior Engineer – Transport Policy

The Royal Borough of Kensington & Chelsea Council
£38,800 - £52,600
This is an exciting opportunity to improve road safety and create healthy streets in a busy and dynamic central London borough. Kensington and Chelsea, London (Greater)
Recruiter: The Royal Borough of Kensington & Chelsea Council

Environmental Health Officer / Health and Safety Practitioner

The Royal Borough of Kensington & Chelsea Council
£33,600 - £45,400 per annum plus performance related pay
The ideal candidate will have a detailed knowledge/understanding of Health and Safety legislation.  Kensington and Chelsea, London (Greater)
Recruiter: The Royal Borough of Kensington & Chelsea Council

Commercial Officer

Rossendale Borough Council
£25,801 - £29,636
We are keen to improve our recycling levels, tackle the climate change agenda and take pride in our open spaces. Rossendale, Lancashire
Recruiter: Rossendale Borough Council

Principal Electrical Asset Officer

Birmingham City Council
£34,788-£42,683
The role requires the post holder to be a key technical specialist for the Authority’s Highways Electrical Asset Management function, providing... Birmingham, West Midlands
Recruiter: Birmingham City Council

Highways & Drainage Team Manager

Newport City Council
£37,849 - £40,760
You will be skilled at analysing multiple sources of information, making excellent decisions, and driving difficult situations towards a... Newport (Casnewydd)
Recruiter: Newport City Council

Street Works Compliance Officer

Telford & Wrekin Council
£29,636 - £31,371 per annum
For further information on the role please click. Telford, Shropshire
Recruiter: Telford & Wrekin Council

Senior Sustainability & Resilience Officer

Essex County Council
£30001.0 - £34017 per annum
This opportunity is to be offered on a 6-month, fixed term / secondment contract basisInterviews scheduled to be held Friday 17th April Job Purpose Es England, Essex, Chelmsford
Recruiter: Essex County Council

Highway Electrical Maintenance & Installation Operative (Street Lighting) Apprentice

Kirklees Metropolitan Council
National minimum wage, currently £8.20 in first 12 months, increasing to £8.72 thereafter
If you are looking for hands on experience and learning on the job then an apprenticeship could be the right route for you. Kirklees, West Yorkshire
Recruiter: Kirklees Metropolitan Council

Highways Civil Engineering Technician Apprentice x 3

Kirklees Metropolitan Council
National minimum wage, currently £8.20 in first 12 months, increasing to £8.72 thereafter
If you are looking for hands on experience and learning on the job then an apprenticeship could be the right route for you. Kirklees, West Yorkshire
Recruiter: Kirklees Metropolitan Council

Safety, Health & Environment Technician Apprentice

Kirklees Metropolitan Council
National minimum wage, currently £8.20 in first 12 months, increasing to £8.72 thereafter
If you are looking for hands on experience and learning on the job then an apprenticeship could be the right route for you. Kirklees, West Yorkshire
Recruiter: Kirklees Metropolitan Council

Strategic Director, Environment & Regeneration

Brent Council
Circa £155,000
Brent is the Borough of Cultures - the most diverse in London - and as a Council we believe in delivering for our communities. Brent, London (Greater)
Recruiter: Brent Council

Highways on Fridays

Register now!

Latest Issue

latest magazine issue

Inside:

  • Exclusive: Self-assessment results
  • Keeping up momentum on major roads
  • The Lifelines Resilience approach
View the latest issue

Latest Video