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Fighting the case for infrastructure

Miranda Housden

The ICE is launching a pre-election infrastructure campaign.

With less than 100 days until the General Election, the ICE’s Commit to Infrastructure campaign - encouraging policymakers to make infrastructure central to their plans for improving economic growth and social well-being - continues to gain momentum. Next week will see the launch of the Institution’s Manifesto for Infrastructure, setting out policy recommendations for all parties to consider when preparing their manifestos.

The ICE regions form a key part of the campaign are doing their bit to put infrastructure high on the regional political agenda, through hosting forums, debates and hustings across
the country.

ICE South East England region will be holding a husting on 9 March in Guildford chaired by immediate past ICE president and chair of the Enterprise M3 Local Enterprise Partnership, Geoff French. The event will not only feature parliamentary candidates debating key infrastructure issues from across the region, but also provide an excellent opportunity for the voices of local people to be heard and taken on board prior to 7 May.

Meanwhile, ICE London has been working closely over the past year with City Hall on the Mayor’s London Infrastructure Plan 2050.

The plan, which will be launched in March, provides the first long-term infrastructure vision for the capital.

Over the coming decades, the capital’s infrastructure will face a series of challenges including an estimated 37% population increase to more than 11M people, a 50% increase in demand for public transport and the delivery of 50,000 new homes a year.

Civil engineers will of course play a key role - not only in solving these challenges, but also in actually delivering the Mayor’s Infrastructure Plan. Throughout 2015, ICE London will host a series of public lectures supported by the Mayor of London looking at just that - covering the energy, transport, waste and resource management, water and flood risk management sectors.

A key deliverable of the plan is the establishment of the London Infrastructure Delivery Board, which will take the lead in improving the delivery of infrastructure in the capital. ICE Fellows from both London and South East England are contributing to this board including Thames’ Water chief executive Martin Baggs, Environment Agency chairman Sir Philip Dilley, CH2M Hill director of rail Sue Kershaw.

It is great to see members of our Institution shaping the future infrastructure of the cities where they live and work.

Over the last six years it has been a pleasure to work closely with ICE members to raise the profile of civil engineering in both London and South East England, and to see the development of City Hall’s engagement with the ICE.

Therefore, I am delighted that Suzanne Moroney, who has been instrumental in the production of the London Infrastructure Plan,
as the principle infrastructure advisor to the Greater London Authority, has been appointed the incoming regional director for London and South East England when I move to ICE South West in April.

  • Miranda Housden is ICE London and South East Regional Director. Follow the ICE on Twitter at @ICE_engineers and get involved with the debate by using the #Commit2Infrastructure hashtag.

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