BRITAIN'S TRANSPORT system needs £200bn in investment over the next 10 years, according to a Confederation of British Industry report out this week.
The CBI's conclusions contrast sharply with the £80bn10 year spending plan set out by deputy prime minister John Prescott in December. But it also calls for radical reform of the financing and delivery of transport projects.
CBI director general Digby Jones said: 'All transport networks, including the road system, should be managed like well regulated utilities. Prescott must also now ask his officials to look innovatively and comprehensively at transport financing. There can be no sacred cows if we are to find economically sustainable ways of investing in transport.'
The findings were strongly backed by the Institution of Civil Engineers. A spokesman said: 'Current delivery systems are log jammed by an inefficient infrastructure planning process. It took 15 years to build CTRL, for example. We really do need to get our act together.'
The report recommends that spending on roads over the next ten years should rise to £25bn, including £8.4bn on new road schemes and £13.1bn on road maintenance.