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Decision making process for major infrastructure requires clearer prioritisation and evaluation

7 February 2023

The Built Environment Committee has published a letter to the Government on its inquiry into infrastructure policymaking and implementation in central government.

Key points

The committee concludes that:

  • The Government should provide a set of objective criteria to explain how it selects which infrastructure project to fund;
  • There is a lack of ministerial accountability for and ownership of the process for deciding and delivering major infrastructure projects. The Government should ensure greater political grip on priorities and improved inter-departmental coordination;
  • The Government should clarify the amount it will invest in infrastructure and explain how this will be sufficient to meet its growth objectives. Unnecessary delays and additional costs may be avoided by providing all necessary planning permissions for major government infrastructure projects before construction begins;
  • The committee is concerned by a lack of post-project evaluation. We invite the Government to explain how it assesses the successes or failures of infrastructure projects in delivering the benefits for which they were designed; and
  • The Instructure Projects Authority should be able to refer persistently ‘red’ rated projects to the National Audit Office for review.

Further information