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Strategic
Business Plan
2020-2025

How we will keep the country moving and create greater capacity to connect businesses, families and friends

Jim O'Sullivan, Chief Executive
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Our Strategic business plan sets out our commitment to how we will protect the environment and neighbouring communities, while preparing our roads for future developments. Our work will unlock jobs and help drive the country’s economy.

Jim O’Sullivan, Chief Executive Officer
Find out more about Highways England and how safety, customer and delivery underpin everything we do.

Investing in our network

  • £27.4 billionto invest in the
    second road period

  • Scheme
    development£347m

    Preparing for the third road period and planning for a network that meets the future needs.

  • Operations,
    maintenance
    and renewals£10.8bn

    Repairing and replacing our road surfaces and other assets, such as bridges, barriers and signage, while keeping traffic moving on our roads, 24/7, 365 days a year.

  • How we run
    our network£1.1bn

    Investing in our people and our organisation to develop new technology and further improve our capabilities and information systems.

  • Designated
    Funds£936m

    Delivering projects which will have wider benefits and addressing issues beyond the traditional focus of road investment.

  • Enhancement
    schemes£14.2bn

    Investing in large and often complex schemes to improve the quality and capacity of our roads, while also preparing for a digital future.

* Figures do not add up due to rounding

£27.4 billion

to invest in the second road period

Investing in our people and organisation to develop new skills and capabilities, and further improve our systems and processes.

Repairing and replacing our road surfaces and other assets, such as bridges, barriers and signage, while keeping traffic moving on our roads, 24/7, 365 days a year.

Investing in our people and our organisation to develop new technology and further improve our capabilities and information systems.

Delivering projects which will have wider benefits and addressing issues beyond the traditional focus of road investment.

Preparing for the third road period and planning for a network that meets the future needs.

* Figures do not add up due to rounding

Enhancement Schemes

We will invest over £14.2 billion in enhancements across the next five years, providing a benefit of £27 billion to customers, local communities and the wider economy.

  • Schemes in development
  • Schemes in construction

Our performance goals 2020-2025

Our performance goals fall into six areas:

Improving safety for all

We need to keep our customers, people and suppliers safe, above all else.

During the second road period, we will work to prevent incidents from occurring. We will also focus on reducing incident severity through a package of activities to promote safer roads, safer people, safer vehicles and coordinated collision response. We will use our Safety and congestion fund to deliver targeted schemes across the country. We will also learn from other organisations and stakeholders about what works best, and collaborate with them to improve safety for all.

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Road safety isn’t exclusive. It’s all well to reduce risks, but the more organisations who share good practice, the better. Highways England is putting its weight behind Driving for Better Business and getting it into the public consciousness.

Rory Morgan, Iron Mountain

Measuring success

Providing fast and reliable journeys

We want to help people and businesses have safe, reliable and efficient journeys.

We will start work on government’s priority schemes, and invest in improvements where they are most needed, regionally and nationally. We will respond to the requirements of our customers, stakeholders and the businesses that rely on our network, and collaborate with partners such as sub-national transport bodies.

Our Safety and congestion fund will improve traffic flow and journey reliability at a local level. And our traffic officers and control centre employees will improve customers’ journeys by tackling and clearing incidents quickly and safely.

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Highways England shows a great desire to provide information and real-time updates, such as estimated travelling time to Wembley when there’s an event there. Moving 90,000 people from Wembley Stadium is no easy task, but with the right coordination and up-to-date travel information, it becomes a lot smoother.

Tom Legg, Head of Transport, Football Association

Measuring success

A well-maintained and resilient network

Our network is complex and varied and requires careful stewardship to keep it in good condition.

Our maintenance programme is essential to safety and keeping our roads open, while our renewals activity allows us to maintain, safeguard and modernise all our assets. Research and data help us to understand what our network will need over the short and long term and inform our planning. We are committed to delivering our work in a way that minimises disruption to our customers and maximises value to taxpayers.

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In a crisis situation like severe weather, our gas distribution network is similar to Highways England’s road network – customers don’t really think about it until there’s an issue and just expect it to work smoothly all the time.

It’s good knowing we can rely on Highways England to do its job – deploying road teams and winter treatment vehicles. It means we can get our people to where they’re needed – allowing us to keep the gas flowing and our people safe and warm.

Ed Syson, Chief Safety and Strategy Officer, Cadent

Measuring success

Delivering better environmental outcomes

We want our roads to work
 more harmoniously with the communities that live alongside them, and the environments that surround them.

Every aspect of our business has a part to play in improving environmental performance, alongside ensuring we meet our statutory obligations. We will embed environmental considerations into all our activities, ranging from infrastructure design to scheme delivery, supported by our environment and wellbeing fund. We will also support the government in delivering their wider environmental strategies.

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The A556 is a good example of how we’re working with Highways England. The green bridge re-connects wooded areas fragmented by the new road, known to be important commuting and foraging routes for bats. The bridge is also expected to provide connectivity for species such as badger and amphibians present in the scheme footprint, as well as pollinators and other invertebrates.

Deborah Hall, Principal Advisor, Major Infrastructure, Natural England

Measuring success

Meeting the needs of all users

We want to meet and exceed the expectations of all those who use our network.

There are many touch points for our customers – from the infrastructure we provide and facilities we support, to the information we share and the control centres we manage. Our research and feedback, combined with insight from others, helps us to understand how our services and roads may need to evolve. We will work with Transport Focus to deliver what our customers need and want, now and in the future.

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As a wheelchair user, it’s hugely important for me to have the choice to drive. A smooth journey for me is all about knowing what will happen – as far as is possible. So, tools like the Highways England app are a routine part of how I plan. I build in time and room for problems that might happen, like a traffic build up or lane closures on the M25 for example.

Pete Carr, disabled road user

Measuring success

Delivering even more value for our customers

We are setting out to deliver £2.23 billion of efficiencies, which will mean that taxpayers will see even more investment for their money than in the past.

We will make improvements to how we procure and manage our suppliers, as well as to how we plan our own maintenance, operations and renewals. These activities will complement our internal capability and development programmes, and our steps to develop our company. We will reinvest all money saved through efficiencies into our network.

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Efficiency is about more than numbers. It’s about looking at how we plan, procure and manage our contracts. It’s also about how we work with our suppliers and others to improve the way we deliver schemes.

Malcolm Dare, Executive Director, Commercial and Procurement, Highways England

Measuring success

How our work will be monitored to make sure we’re delivering for our customers

The Office of Road and Rail makes sure we meet our commitments to improve England’s motorways and major A-roads, while meeting the needs of road users. They monitor our progress against our performance and efficiency goals.

Transport Focus represents and champions road user needs. We have worked closely with them to develop our plans for the next five years, recognising their role in representing the interests of our customers.

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Looking to the future

Our aim is to create a sustainable SRN that meets the future needs of our stakeholders, road users, communities and the environment we live in.

We expect, and are planning for, advances over the next 30 years that will revolutionise transportation, road travel and personal and commercial mobility. Our roads, our infrastructure and even our ways of working will need to change to embrace and enable new ways of travelling.

Over the next five years we will develop our plans for the third road period and beyond. By working closely with our supply chain, we will understand the challenges they face, and make sure they are equipped for the future.

Downloads and further resources

View the full versions of our plans, as well as other useful documents.

cover image Strategic business plan

Downloads and further resources

View the full versions of our plans, as well as other useful documents.

Work with us

We need people with a range of ideas, skills and capabilities to help us deliver our ambitious plans. Whether it’s working for us directly, in our supply chain or through our partnership work, find out how you can help connect the country.