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The Development of a Common Investment Appraisal for Urban Transport Projects.

By A.D. May, A.L. Bristow, A.S. Fowkes, P.G. Hopkinson, P.J. Mackie, C.A. Nash, J. Bates, M. Roberts and R. Winn


In December 1990 we were invited by Birmingham City Council and Centro to submit a proposal for an introductory study of the development of a common investment appraisal for urban transport projects. Many of the issues had arisen during the Birmingham Integrated Transport Study (BITS) in which we were involved, and in the subsequent assessment of light rail schemes of which we have considerable experience. In subsequent discussion, the objectives were identified as being:- (i) to identify, briefly, the weaknesses with existing appraisal techniques; (ii) to develop proposals for common methods for the social cost-benefit appraisal of both urban road and rail schemes which overcome these weaknesses; (iii) to develop complementary and consistent proposals for common methods of financial appraisal of such projects; (iv) to develop proposals for variants of the methods in (ii) and (iii) which are appropriate to schemes of differing complexity and cost; (v) to consider briefly methods of treating externalities, and performance against other public sector goals, which are consistent with those developed under (ii) to (iv) above; (vi) to recommend work to be done in the second phase of the study (beyond March 1991) on the provision of input to such evaluation methods from strategic and mode-specific models, and on the testing of the proposed evaluation methods. Such issues are particularly topical at present, and we have been able to draw, in our study, on experience of:- \ud (i) evaluation methods developed for BITS and subsequent integrated transport studies (MVA) (ii) evaluation of individual light rail and heavy rail investment projects (ITS,MVA); (iii) the recommendations of AMA in "Changing Gear" (iv) advice to IPPR on appraisal methodology (ITS); (v) submissions to the House of Commons enquiry into "Roads for the Future" (ITS); (vi) advice to the National Audit Office (ITS) (vii) involvement in the SACTRA study of urban road appraisal (MVA, ITS

Publisher: Institute of Transport Studies, University of Leeds
Year: 1991
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