Greater Manchester Congestion Charging Functional Design and Business Case
Location: Manchester, UK
LeighFisher advised the Greater Manchester Passenger Transport Executive (GMPTE) on the options for congestion charging to enable it to bid for new central government funding to upgrade Manchester’s public transport system.
For two and a half years, we supported GMPTE in the development of a congestion charging scheme that would satisfy the Manchester local authorities and convince the UK Department for Transport (DfT) that: the proposal was technically and financially viable; the business case contained positive economic impacts; and the right option had been chosen within the Government’s wider transport strategy.
The scope of work undertaken included:
- Analysing strategy and policy, considering a full range of geographic, pricing, and product options to select a preferred approach for more detailed appraisal
- Identifying the full scope of technology options and architecture that would best fit Manchester’s needs
- Developing full functional design and business rules for system
- Through road traffic and revenue forecasting, formulated a business case for the system based on revenues, capital and operating costs, and economic impacts
- Developing an implementation plan, including urban transit procurement advice, governance, and testing schedule
- Establishing product options, including cost and revenue modelling of payment and enforcement options
DfT supported the proposals through partnership and programme entry stages, and was willing to support it through to funding approval.
The technical solution was endorsed as being a “step change” in advancing road pricing technology and design in the UK. It included deployment of European Commission standard Dedicated Short Range Communications technology and the inclusion of a Global Navigation Satellite System distance-based pilot scheme in parallel with that technology. However, the best technical solution is not always the best political decision and the congestion charging programme was eventually shelved after a local referendum resulted in a "No" vote.
- Developed a deep understanding of congestion charging strategy and policy
- Output was a business case for a congestion charging system and a full functional design
- Produced a detailed implementation plan covering urban transit procurement advice, governance, and testing schedule
- Developed product options, including cost and revenue modelling of payment and enforcement options
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