ITS Royalty attend our Road User Charging Interest Group

January 22 2016

Our RUC Interest Group is one of our largest and best attended groups.  As is to be expected, it is also the one with the most international participation.  Firstly, tolling and RUC are global business areas and secondly, so far nobody has been able to get rich by working in this sector in the UK only.  In fact scraping a living might have been a challenge.  ITS (UK) members include several world leading experts in this technical area but while based in the UK, they work all over the world.

The Group is led by Keith Mortimer (pictured) of Wyeval Consulting, supported by Honorary Secretary Dr John Walker of the University of Southampton.

This meeting was kindly hosted by Atkins at their lovely campus in Epsom, always a pleasure to visit this model workplace which can’t be easy to leave on summer evenings when the parkland is at its best.

The programme:

  1. Welcome & introduction by Dr John Walker
  2. Welcome & introduction by: Tony Meehan, Director, Atkins
  3. Keynote Speaker: An idea whose time has (finally) come? Road-User Charging and Cities –  Steve Norris President of ITS (UK) and former MP and Transport Minister
  4.  DfT’s Changing Attitudes to Road Pricing and how the RAC Foundation sees the Future – Steve Gooding, Director of the RAC Foundation
  5. The Office of Rail and Road and its remit for Strategic Roads Monitoring- Peter Antolik, Highways Director, Office of Rail and Road
  6. Traffic Management at the Dartford Crossing –  Martin Cummings, Atkins
  7. Road Pricing on the Humber Bridge –  Mark Berzins, Atkins
  8. Tolling at the Mersey Gateway –  Charles Hewon, Sanef Tolling Ltd & Gary Evans,Merseytravel
  9. The Business News – Keith Mortimer, Chair, RUC Interest Group

We were privileged to have three VIP Stevens attending: Norris, Glaister and Gooding.  ITS royalty indeed and very instructive to hear from people who have a deep understanding of how policy and strategy is formed and implemented.  The technology may be fantastic, but it is political, not technical expertise which secures ITS implementations.  The history of road user charging certainly bears this out.  But less controversial ITS do too – if elected Members are not convinced that upgrading your UTMC system is good value, then you won’t get the funding.

Organisation: ITS United Kingdom

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