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Railtrack's board

NEWS

Railtrack's board has approved a £2.5bn investment plan to the next financial year 2000/01 starting on 1 April.

The plan includes:

£1.5bn on infrastructure renewals; £600M on WCML; £80M on train protection and warning system; £190M on station regeneration; and £500M on CTRL phase one.

Ministers lost track of cost increases for the fit out of the Secret Intelligence Service headquarters building at Vauxhall Cross in London because they were not informed of omissions or qualifications to estimates. This is one of the conclusions of a National Audit Office report on the project published last week after the Government lifted restrictions on its release. Original estimates for the fit out were £22M excluding VAT but the final cost was £81.3M, including VAT.

The Construction Industry Board, the body set up to implement the findings of the 1994 Latham review, could have its activities significantly scaled down if proposals in a consultation paper are accepted. The new CIB would act as a co-ordinating body designed to rationalise industry initiatives. The CIB would set policy, but much of the actual work would be carried out by other industry organisations. Copies of the consultation paper can downloaded from www.ciboard.org.uk. The consultation closes on 3 April.

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