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Utilities

It is crucial that the region's wider strategic infrastructure, such as the power utilities, has the capacity to enable planned growth.

Utilities study

Summer 2018

Securing the timely delivery of enabling infrastructure is fundamental to unlocking the region's immense economic potential.

This is why England's Economic Heartland commissioned a study to identify opportunities to improve the delivery of utility infrastructure in the Oxford-Milton Keynes-Cambridge growth corridor.

Lead in bringing organisations together: A Strategic Infrastructure Delivery Board should be formally established, with the identification of named champions for each infrastructure sector to work across departments and parties

Establish new approaches to infrastructure investment: Innovative financing models should be assessed, such as tax incremental finance and land value capture to create the scope for the investment needed. Delivery models should also be examined.

Lead in streamlining the planning process: EEH should make the case and provide strong evidence of infrastructure needs at pre-planning stage and continue to work with regulators and utility providers across sectors to refine assumptions and future growth scenarios.

Realise potential changes in regulatory frameworks: Enhancements can be made in the short-term. EEH can take a lead in pulling together agencies into alignments to best serve the needs of the area; in particular by proposing revisions to regulatory frameworks.

Seek further policy support for the Heartland: A National Policy Statement could potentially be used to encourage regulators to take account of the need for advance delivery of strategic infrastructure.

England's Economic Heartland will now consider these recommendations before deciding our next steps to be taken jointly with Government, infrastructure owners and providers, regulators and local authorities.

Lead officer: Amanda Jacobs: ​Amanda.Jacobs@Oxfordshire.gov.uk

01296 382703 | englandseconomicheartland@buckscc.gov.uk