LGA calls for powers to tackle ‘rush hour gridlock’

The Local Government Association (LGA) has called for new powers to allow it to introduce lane rental schemes without the requirement to get approval from the government, in a bid to help tackle congestion.

The lane rental schemes mean utility companies would be charged a daily rate for the work carried out on congested roads during busy periods.

The LGA argued that introducing such measures would incentivise companies to finish work faster and suggested the extra revenue be spent on strategies to reduce future road works disruption.

Currently Transport for London (TfL) and Kent County Council are the only organisations which have approval to run lane rental schemes, and have collectively been able to cut serious disruption from roadworks in London by almost half.

Councillor Peter Box, LGA Transport spokesman, said: “Many of our towns and cities could face gridlock at rush-hour unless robust and decisive action is taken right now. However, local authorities are being hamstrung by a lack of effective powers to tackle this issue head on. Councils know their areas best and should be able to make decisions about traffic locally.

“This means they need the option of being able to introduce lane rental schemes without Secretary of State approval, which is time-consuming and bureaucratic.”

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