To consider the report of the Head of Rail Specification and Delivery; to receive an update on how Transport for the North intends to update its vision and objectives for rail building on the first two Long Term Rail Strategy documents published in 2015 and 2018.
Lead: David Worsley
4.1 Members received the report from the Strategic Rail Director who outlined the key points of his report.
4.2 Addressing the issue of short term or long-term Mayor Burnham stated the need for a short term focus if it is going to be meaningful. He expressed concern about investment in the railway in the North until the end of the decade. He informed the Committee that it is his understanding that no significant capacity enhancements are planned for Central Manchester until the end of the decade. He further stated that in order for the plan to be meaningful it has to set out what the Committee needs as a minimum basic level of service.
Mayor Burnham believes that a plan is needed which should include a timeline outlining minimum expectations and providing completion dates.
4.3 Cllr Hinchcliffe requested an additional point be included on levelling up. She explained that some decisions made regarding the railway are bad for disadvantaged places and she wants to ensure that there is more local understanding on these decisions. She suggested that the point include consulting with local stakeholders when making decisions.
4.4 Cllr Browne suggested that a mix of short, medium and long-term deliverables need to be included in order to hold decision makers to account. He also stated that the documents need to reference putting passengers first and not customers.
4.5 The Chair agreed with the comments of Members. He explained that the document needs to be a visionary and targeted document focussing on the short, medium and long term with a particular focus on the tangibles setting out what the Committee wants the achievements to be for the next decade and beyond.
That the Committee supports the approach to the rail elements of the Strategic Transport Plan outlined in the report.