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Introduction

This section sets out the guidance on assessing programmes within the road maintenance activity classes.

The road maintenance activity classes include all road maintenance, operations, and renewals work categories on local road and state highway networks.

Refer to the activity class definition for more details on work categories.

Links to planning

The Transport Agency expects road maintenance programmes to be well linked to long term planning documents, particularly Activity Management Plans (AMPs) and Long Term Plans (LTPs). These documents should describe the information assumptions underlying the network management.

Forward work programmes and budgets for road maintenance and operations must be derived from network inventory and condition information, a regular field inspection programme, a robust treatment selection process and funding affordability considerations.

Approved Organisations and the Transport Agency (state highways) should be able to demonstrate how the proposed road operations, maintenance, renewal and improvement activities optimise the life-cycle costs of their road networks.

Information provided to support the maintenance programme should make reference to the relevant parts of these planning documents.

Customer levels of service

The One Network Road Classification (external link) (ONRC) has been adopted by the sector to ensure national consistency around the levels of service delivered by a network. As Performance measures and targets for the ONRC, Customer levels of Service have just been developed and still need to be tested and integrated into the network, a Road Controlling Authorities’ allocation in the 2015-18 National Land Transport Programme (NLTP) will not be based on ONRC performance measures. Where available, they will be considered as part of the overall evidence base.

The Transport Agency expects that the majority of Approved Organisations’ and the Transport Agency’s (state highways) existing performance measures will continue to be the basis of determining transport network benefits for customers, and influencing the maintenance programme development for the 2015-18 NLTP.

Strategic fit for road maintenance programmes

Default strategic fit

By default, the strategic fit rating for road maintenance programmes is low.

 

Requirements for medium rating

A road maintenance programme may be given a medium rating for strategic fit if the problem, issue or opportunity is that the appropriate customer levels of service are being delivered for:

  • safety, and
  • journey time reliability, and
  • resilience (including lifelines)

on journeys for:

  • employment, and
  • access to economic opportunities, and
  • access to social opportunities, and
  • tourism, and
  • freight

 

Requirements for high rating

A high rating for strategic fit must only be given to a road maintenance programme if the problem, issue or opportunity is that there is a significant gap to the appropriate customer levels of service for:

  • safety, and
  • journey time reliability, and
  • resilience (including lifelines)

on journeys for:

  • employment, and
  • access to economic opportunities, and
  • tourism, and
  • freight

 

Use of strategic fit rating

For the 2015-18 NLTP, the strategic fit rating will be used as a signal by the Transport Agency as to the significance of a problem, issue or opportunity relative to appropriate customer levels of service. It is not an indication of how well a programme is being optimised and delivered by an organisation. A Medium rather than a High strategic fit rating should not be viewed as having “negative” management connotations. A medium strategic fit rating would indicate a well managed network that largely meets appropriate customer levels of service.

 

Further information

Further information on Strategic Fit assessment is provided in the guidance on Developing an Assessment Profile

Effectiveness for road maintenance programmes

Criteria for effectiveness

All six criteria set out below are to be assessed for any programme or activity proposed for NLTP inclusion or funding approval. The explanations are a guide to assessment, highlighting aspects that need to be considered. If any of these aspects is not applicable to the activity then it should not form part of the assessment.

Criteria Explanation Rating
Outcomes focused
  • continues to address the problem, issue or opportunity identified in the Strategic Fit assessment
  • consistency with levels of service in an appropriate classification system
  • a robust transition plan to implement the One Network Roading Classification in time for the 2018-21 NLTP has been provided (if there is no plan, the rating is Low)
L/M/H
Integrated
  • consistency with the current network and future transport plans
  • consistency with other current and future activities
  • consistency with current and future land use planning
  • accommodates different needs across modes
  • support as an agreed activity across partners
L/M/H

Correctly scoped

  • the degree of fit as part of an agreed strategy or business case
  • has followed the intervention hierarchy to consider alternatives and options including low cost alternatives and options
  • is of an appropriate scale in relation to the issue/opportunity
  • covers and/or manages the spatial impact (upstream and downstream, network impacts)
  • mitigates any adverse impacts on other results
L/M/H

Affordable

  • is affordable through the lifecycle for all parties
  • has understood and traded off the best whole of life cost approach
  • has understood the benefits and costs between transport users and other parties and sought contributions as possible
L/M/H

Timely

  • delivers enduring benefits over the timeframe identified in the justified strategy or business case
  • provides the benefits in a timely manner
L/M/H

Confidence

  • manages current and future risk for results/outcomes
  • manages current and future risk for costs
L/M/H

Overall

Assessment is based on lowest rating of all components L/M/H

Further information

Further information on Effectiveness assessment is provided in the section on Developing an Assessment Profile.

Benefit and cost appraisal for road maintenance programmes

Mix of methodologies applied

The main benefit and cost appraisal methodology for assessing road maintenance programmes is unit cost benchmarking. Additionally network performance comparisons against required levels of service and trend analysis (past and future costs and demands) play a part in the assessment.

Underlying the programme assessment is evidence of road controlling authorities applying sound activity management principles and processes to develop their road maintenance proposals, including the use of present value methodologies to identify the best value for money options and timing of interventions.

  

Programme ratings

Road maintenance programmes are given a rating using Low, Medium, or High based on their relative benchmarking comparisons.

  • Low - when cost effectiveness and benchmarking shows below-average band efficiency
  • Medium - when cost effectiveness and benchmarking shows average band efficiency
  • High - when cost effectiveness shows above-average band efficiency

  

Further information

Further information on Benefit and Cost Appraisal is provided in the section on Developing an Assessment Profile.

Other considerations for road maintenance programmes

Division for assessment

A road operations, maintenance and renewal programme will be divided into the following components for assessment purposes:

  • Network security and resilience (Emergency works, Structures maintenance, Structures component replacement, Rail level crossing warning devices).
  • Optimum use (Operational traffic management, Traffic services maintenance, Traffic service renewals).
  • Pavement renewals to minimise lifecycle costs (Sealed road pavement rehabilitation, Sealed road resurfacing).
  • Measures to extend asset life and/or minimise lifecycle costs (Preventive maintenance, Drainage maintenance, Drainage renewals).
  • Measures to maintain agreed levels of service (Sealed pavement maintenance, Unsealed pavement maintenance, Unsealed road metalling).
  • Associated improvements for network security or resilience.
  • Network management (Network and asset management, Property management).
  • Environmental effects (Cycle path maintenance, Environmental maintenance, Environmental renewals).
  • Remaining components of the road operations, maintenance and renewals programme.

 

Inputs to assessment

The Transport Agency will use the following information when assessing requests for road maintenance programmes:

  • the Approved Organisation’s and the Transport Agency's (state highways) submission for operations, maintenance and renewals funding, including supporting information
  • the programme of work as recommended in the Approved Organisation’s and the Transport Agency's (state highways) road activity/ Asset Management Plan
  • targeted levels of service in accordance with the Transport Agency's Maintenance guidelines for local roads (external link) or as otherwise agreed with the Transport Agency
  • the Approved Organisation’s Long Term Plan, or equivalent 10-year plan, and any relevant Annual Plan
  • recommendations from an accepted treatment selection algorithm and/or pavement deterioration model
  • evidence of periodic condition monitoring and traffic counting processes
  • maintenance activity/cost information held in RAMM
  • trends in network condition, including from physical inspections
  • benchmarking comparisons with other Approved Organisations and the Transport Agency (state highways)
  • contractual arrangements
  • previous levels of expenditure
  • movement in relevant cost indexes, and
  • findings from technical audit reports.

 

Marginal changes

Consideration must be given as to how the strategic fit, effectiveness and benefit and cost appraisal rating would change with refocusing of activities at the margin. 

Results Alignment for road improvements

  • Requirements for high rating

    A high rating for strategic fit must only be given to a road maintenance programme if the problem, issue or opportunity is that there is a significant gap to the appropriate customer levels of service for:

    • safety, and
    • journey time reliability, and
    • resilience (including lifelines)

    on journeys for:

    • employment, and
    • access to economic opportunities, and
    • tourism, and
    • freight
    Close Back to top
  • Use of strategic fit rating

    For the 2015-18 NLTP, the strategic fit rating will be used as a signal by the Transport Agency as to the significance of a problem, issue or opportunity relative to appropriate customer levels of service. It is not an indication of how well a programme is being optimised and delivered by an organisation. A Medium rather than a High strategic fit rating should not be viewed as having “negative” management connotations. A medium strategic fit rating would indicate a well managed network that largely meets appropriate customer levels of service.

    Close Back to top

Effectiveness for road maintenance programmes

  • Criteria for effectiveness

    All six criteria set out below are to be assessed for any programme or activity proposed for NLTP inclusion or funding approval. The explanations are a guide to assessment, highlighting aspects that need to be considered. If any of these aspects is not applicable to the activity then it should not form part of the assessment.

    Criteria Explanation Rating
    Outcomes focused
    • continues to address the problem, issue or opportunity identified in the Strategic Fit assessment
    • consistency with levels of service in an appropriate classification system
    • a robust transition plan to implement the One Network Roading Classification in time for the 2018-21 NLTP has been provided (if there is no plan, the rating is Low)
    L/M/H
    Integrated
    • consistency with the current network and future transport plans
    • consistency with other current and future activities
    • consistency with current and future land use planning
    • accommodates different needs across modes
    • support as an agreed activity across partners
    L/M/H

    Correctly scoped

    • the degree of fit as part of an agreed strategy or business case
    • has followed the intervention hierarchy to consider alternatives and options including low cost alternatives and options
    • is of an appropriate scale in relation to the issue/opportunity
    • covers and/or manages the spatial impact (upstream and downstream, network impacts)
    • mitigates any adverse impacts on other results
    L/M/H

    Affordable

    • is affordable through the lifecycle for all parties
    • has understood and traded off the best whole of life cost approach
    • has understood the benefits and costs between transport users and other parties and sought contributions as possible
    L/M/H

    Timely

    • delivers enduring benefits over the timeframe identified in the justified strategy or business case
    • provides the benefits in a timely manner
    L/M/H

    Confidence

    • manages current and future risk for results/outcomes
    • manages current and future risk for costs
    L/M/H

    Overall

    Assessment is based on lowest rating of all components L/M/H

    Further information

    Further information on Effectiveness assessment is provided in the section on Developing an Assessment Profile.

    Close Back to top

Benefit and cost appraisal for road maintenance programmes

  • Mix of methodologies applied

    The main benefit and cost appraisal methodology for assessing road maintenance programmes is unit cost benchmarking. Additionally network performance comparisons against required levels of service and trend analysis (past and future costs and demands) play a part in the assessment.

    Underlying the programme assessment is evidence of road controlling authorities applying sound activity management principles and processes to develop their road maintenance proposals, including the use of present value methodologies to identify the best value for money options and timing of interventions.

    Close Back to top
  • Programme ratings

    Road maintenance programmes are given a rating using Low, Medium, or High based on their relative benchmarking comparisons.

    • Low - when cost effectiveness and benchmarking shows below-average band efficiency
    • Medium - when cost effectiveness and benchmarking shows average band efficiency
    • High - when cost effectiveness shows above-average band efficiency
    Close Back to top

Other considerations for road maintenance programmes

  • Division for assessment

    A road operations, maintenance and renewal programme will be divided into the following components for assessment purposes:

    • Network security and resilience (Emergency works, Structures maintenance, Structures component replacement, Rail level crossing warning devices).
    • Optimum use (Operational traffic management, Traffic services maintenance, Traffic service renewals).
    • Pavement renewals to minimise lifecycle costs (Sealed road pavement rehabilitation, Sealed road resurfacing).
    • Measures to extend asset life and/or minimise lifecycle costs (Preventive maintenance, Drainage maintenance, Drainage renewals).
    • Measures to maintain agreed levels of service (Sealed pavement maintenance, Unsealed pavement maintenance, Unsealed road metalling).
    • Associated improvements for network security or resilience.
    • Network management (Network and asset management, Property management).
    • Environmental effects (Cycle path maintenance, Environmental maintenance, Environmental renewals).
    • Remaining components of the road operations, maintenance and renewals programme.
    Close Back to top
  • Inputs to assessment

    The Transport Agency will use the following information when assessing requests for road maintenance programmes:

    • the Approved Organisation’s and the Transport Agency's (state highways) submission for operations, maintenance and renewals funding, including supporting information
    • the programme of work as recommended in the Approved Organisation’s and the Transport Agency's (state highways) road activity/ Asset Management Plan
    • targeted levels of service in accordance with the Transport Agency's Maintenance guidelines for local roads (external link) (external link) or as otherwise agreed with the Transport Agency
    • the Approved Organisation’s Long Term Plan, or equivalent 10-year plan, and any relevant Annual Plan
    • recommendations from an accepted treatment selection algorithm and/or pavement deterioration model
    • evidence of periodic condition monitoring and traffic counting processes
    • maintenance activity/cost information held in RAMM
    • trends in network condition, including from physical inspections
    • benchmarking comparisons with other Approved Organisations and the Transport Agency (state highways)
    • contractual arrangements
    • previous levels of expenditure
    • movement in relevant cost indexes, and
    • findings from technical audit reports.
    Close Back to top
  • Marginal changes

    Consideration must be given as to how the strategic fit, effectiveness and benefit and cost appraisal rating would change with refocusing of activities at the margin. 

    Close Back to top
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