Latest Rail News

08.01.16

pteg becomes Urban Transport Group as TfL joins in

Passenger transport executive (PTE) representative body pteg is today changing its name to Urban Transport Group to reflect both the new membership of Transport for London (TfL) and the governance change in city-regions.

TfL is the latest authority to join, the group whose six previous members were South Yorkshire PTE, Merseytravel, North East Combined Authority, Centro, West Yorkshire Combined Authority and Transport for Greater Manchester (TfGM). Other associate members – Strathclyde Partnership for Transport, Bristol and the West of England Authorities, and Nottingham City Council – will remain in the group.

To reflect TfL coming on board and the devolution shake-up in city-region governance boards, the group has clarified its three main roles for the future.

These include making the case for urban transport, acting at the nation’s “premier professional network” for public sector urban transport professionals through collaborative working, and providing sector leadership by addressing long-term challenges.

Naturally, the group – which has always campaigned for devolved oversight – will be broadening its focus and its geography by pushing beyond its former public transport role, now taking on strategic highways, active travel, and freight and logistics.

Chair of the group and TfGM chief, Dr Jon Lamonte, said there is a “consensus now around the power of investing in cities”, particularly around making a case for their “strong and effective” transport network.

“We are therefore delighted that TfL is joining us as full members as this will ensure that the Urban Transport Group really is the UK’s voice on urban transport as well as strengthening our professional network immeasurable so we can all make the most from the opportunities that arise from accelerating devolution,” he said.

“These are exciting times for urban transport with transformational investment in devolved rail networks, new buses legislation on its way, and a more long term and strategic approach to improving the links between our cities. As a network we can help shape how these opportunities unfold so that each of our members can implement improvements in ways which best meet local priorities and circumstances.”

Agreeing that urban transport is now a key element of the devolution agenda, Mike Brown, London’s transport commissioner, said TfL is also delighted to join forces with the six strategic bodies to safeguard sustained transport investment in city-regions.

“‘We will share our experience of running a devolved, integrated transport network that has delivered smart-ticketing, joined-up information and open data, and will work with other cities to improve the services that millions of customers across the country rely on every day,” he said.

Lamonte also hopes that as a united body, Urban Transport Group will be able to “significantly enhance” its work with Whitehall, the wider industry and its stakeholders to push forward an “informed debate” about urban transport priorities, as well as the “cost-effective delivery” of tangible improvements.

Both transport minister Andrew Jones MP and shadow transport secretary Lilian Greenwood MP embraced the change and TfL’s membership, with Jones adamant that the seven transport authorities will “share resources and expertise and plan ahead to meet rising demand for public transport”.

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