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Call for 'route map' to the Northern Powerhouse

Civils firms have called for a firm plan to be drawn up for creating the ‘Northern Powerhouse’.

Trade body the Civil Engineering Contractors Association urged chancellor George Osborne to set out detailed steps towards getting vital infrastructure projects in the North off the ground.

Local authority body Transport for the North earlier this year set out details of up to £65bn of proposed rail schemes across the North of England as the government works towards its vision of a connected region able to compete with London.

Ceca has now called for a detailed pipeline of the public and private investments in infrastructure that would unleash growth in the North, along with an assessment of the actions that would need to be taken to make each project a reality.

It said this assessment should look at the financial, planning, political and technical challenges that stand in the way of the projects identified.

Ceca chief executive Alasdair Reisner said: “The Northern Powerhouse project is a once in lifetime opportunity to enable the North to become an economic competitor to London and the South East.

“But to ensure the government’s ambitions are realised we need a clear plan of action to guarantee spades in the ground in the near future.

“We call on the chancellor of the Exchequer to provide a clear route map to the delivery of the Northern Powerhouse, allowing industry to work with government to make it a reality.”

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