Councillors welcome valuable report into the region's roads

A new report highlighting the region’s roads management assets and the cost of maintaining and improving that infrastructure over the next 20 years has been welcomed by Aberdeenshire Councillors.

Wednesday, 22nd December 2021, 12:00 am
The Status and Options Report summarises the status of the authority’s road assets in terms of size, value and condition

The Status and Options Report summarises the status of the authority’s road assets in terms of size, value and condition and presents a number of investment scenarios for its major road assets.

Councillors were advised that the options presented and issues raised are in line with the nationally-agreed approach to roads asset management and are also designed to assist with the decisions required in any annual budget-setting process.

While plans to include highways assets in the financial reporting requirements for local authorities having now been abandoned, council officers have continued to quantify their value.

The £4,658,627,000 Depreciated Replacement Cost for the main asset groups have been calculated as follows:

• Bridges and Structures - £579,000,000

• Carriageways - £3,842,762,000

• Footways - £173,316,000

• Street Lighting - £62,955,000

• Traffic Signals - £594,000

The total value of all other physical assets such as heritage assets, assets held for sale, and property, plant and equipment excluding roads assets listed in the council’s unaudited accounts for 2020/21 was £2,023,709,000.

The Committee was advised that while these figures highlighted significant funding gaps, it was anticipated that this will be reduced with allocations from the Infrastructure Investment Fund 2 for the Bridges and Structures, Carriageways and Footways asset groups.

Cllr Peter Argyle, Infrastructure Services Committee chair, said: “It’s a very difficult environment at the moment but we, as a council, have taken the long-term view and invested an additional £5million into roads maintenance which will be hugely-beneficial and already we are starting to see things improve across our substantial network.”

Vice-chair Cllr John Cox added: “This report provides us with various investment scenarios and the projected impact across a 20-year period which will ultimately enable us to make key decisions.”