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New study into value of shorter journeys

Arup is to manage a project to update valuations of time spent travelling in the age of the internet.

The company will work with the Institute of Transport Studies to deliver a report to help the  Department for Transport more accurately evaluate proposed infrastructure schemes.

Government reports published last autumn recommended that the values of time spent travelling should be updated from those created 20 years ago.

Such values have been a major talking point in the discussions over High Speed 2. Opponents claimed too much economic value was originally given to the shortening of business journeys as work carried out en route was downplayed. The government has since switched its principle justification for the project to one of regional growth and connectivity.

Arup’s study aims to provide up-to-date national average values of travel time savings. It will investigate the factors causing variation in values, and improve understanding of the uncertainties involved.

Values of reliability and quality of journey will also be looked at.

The new information will feed into the UK’s official transport analysis guidance, WebTag, which mandates values of travel time savings when assessing publicly funded transport projects.

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