Lane rental charges: Thames Water

Meeting: 
MQT on 2009-11-18
Session date: 
November 18, 2009
Reference: 
2009/3308
Question By: 
Caroline Pidgeon
Organisation: 
Liberal Democrats
Asked Of: 
The Mayor

Question

Will your plan to impose lane rental charges on Thames Water for digging up London streets result in higher bills for water customers, and what talks have you or your officers had with the water regulator OFWAT about preventing these costs being passed on?

Answer

Answer for Lane rental charges: Thames Water

Answer for Lane rental charges: Thames Water

Answered By: 
The Mayor

The Secretary of State for Transport and I have agreed the need to look at all appropriate measures to minimise the disruption caused by road and street works. This includes exploring the potential for a targeted lane rental scheme to incentivise shorter works durations and innovative working practices at key locations to ensure that the busiest streets are available at the busiest times to all road users.

Full consideration would need to be given to the costs to all works undertakers in introducing such a scheme. However, my intention would be to develop a scheme where lane rental charges are avoidable (through the use of trench plating, joint and off peak working and 'no-dig' techniques) and therefore costs should not be passed on to customers.

However, the introduction of any lane rental scheme needs to be developed with, and approved by, the Department for Transport and I have asked TfL to progress the proposal with their colleagues at the DfT.