8. Planning to Deliver Our Targets
We set clear targets for the delivery of our asset management objectives, which reflect our business responsibilities and align to our strategic objectives and priorities.
Our long-term plans will deliver a road network in a condition which will enable safe, reliable journeys, maximising opportunities in business, leisure and tourism to deliver economic opportunities which support a more socially cohesive and green Scotland.
How do we plan for the future?
Effective investment planning in our assets provides a road network in a good condition, providing safer and reliable journeys and improving opportunities for business, tourism and leisure. It supports the move to minimise the impact of our activities.
Transport Scotland takes a long-term, strategic approach to managing assets, which is defined as 'lifecycle planning' – provide the right level of service whilst minimising whole life costs. This includes developing individual lifecycle plans which represent the output of our lifecycle planning process, enabling asset management practices such as cost projection, performance management and risk management.
We look ahead to identify significant increases or decreases in funding needs and annual work volumes. As part of this we identify, develop and analyse several different investment scenarios for each of our three major asset types: Carriageways, Structures, and Network Assets.
How do we develop our plans?
Carriageways – our financial model has been specifically developed to perform predictive modelling, utilising existing survey data, to allow us to estimate the future maintenance requirements over several years for differing levels of funding or different road condition targets. The model has been used to assess potential future scenarios and forms an input into our Investment Strategy.
Structures – we use an industry standard bridge index which is calculated from inspection data and allows us to analyse and trend condition information. This helps us determine overall deterioration rates and sits alongside our planned inspection regimes, which more accurately determine actual defects, deterioration and remedial works, feeding into individual lifecycle plans.
Ancillary assets – we use data from detailed inspections and condition surveys to inform models which predict the future condition of ancillary assets (defined as all assets not classed as carriageways or structures). This allows the levels of funding required to achieve the outcomes of various scenarios to be predicted and reported.
How do we ensure value for money?
Lifecycle planning determines our investment requirements for our network, we then use a value management approach where appropriate to assess our options for carriageway and structures schemes. This ensures that funding is prioritised to the most deserving schemes with demonstrable maintenance needs that align with our strategic objectives.
Our plans for the future
To optimise our available funding allocation across the trunk road network we will build upon our knowledge gained from lifecycle planning to further develop cross-asset modelling for our network. Prioritising the available funding by assessing the maintenance needs across the network will ensure that we further improve our decision making by investing in maintenance where there is greatest need. In addition, we have developed value management processes for ancillary assets which will be included in the Network Maintenance Contracts.