Highway asset management policy

East Sussex County Council - Transport and Environment Policy Summary

Purpose of policy

East Sussex County Council considers that an asset management approach to the maintenance of the highway network will support the achievement of the Council Priorities and Local Transport Plan visions

Council Priorities

‘To deliver our priorities at a time of reducing resources and increasing demand we must work as One Council with a clear focus on achieving the best outcomes we can for East Sussex.’

Local Transport Plan Vision

‘To make East Sussex a prosperous county where an effective, well-managed transport infrastructure, and improved travel choices help businesses to thrive and deliver better access to jobs and services, safer, healthier, sustainable and inclusive communities and a high quality environment.'

Policy statement

East Sussex County Council is committed to Asset management as a means to deliver a more efficient and effective approach to management of highway infrastructure assets through longer-term planning and ensuring that levels of service are defined and achievable for available budgets. It supports making the case for funding, for better communication with stakeholders, and facilitates a greater understanding of the contribution highway infrastructure assets make to economic growth and social well-being of local communities.

East Sussex County Council will achieve this by:

Helping people help themselves

An asset management approach will enable a focus on customer engagement and satisfaction.
Through the effective use of asset management principles, we will aim to:

  • gain feedback to manage and improve our service
  • focus on local engagement whilst communicating messages clearly
  • support and encourage local engagement.

Driving economic growth 

The Council is responsible for looking after most of the roads in the county, which are a vital part of the infrastructure for economic growth. Most of the highways maintenance budget is spent through the highways contract. Through the effective use of asset management principles we aim to:

  • get the maximum value out of the highways contract to enable us to focus on improving the condition of highways within the county to create the conditions for growth and improve enterprise
  • balance competing needs across the highway network and select options which best meet the desired outcomes
  • ensure that the East Sussex highway network is in the best condition for the investment available

Keeping vulnerable people safe 

We have broad duties to keep people safe in the county, for example our work in partnership with others on road safety encompasses education and behaviour change as well as engineering solutions. Our aim is to reduce the number of road casualties within the county, whilst minimising the human cost and severity of injuries. Through the effective use of asset management principles, we will aim to:

  • maintain a safe and secure highway environment
  • comply with all statutory obligations, meeting users’ needs for safety
  • consider road safety at all times when developing forward programmes of work

Making best use of our resources

An asset management approach has been widely accepted by central and local government as a means of delivering a more efficient and effective approach to highway maintenance through longer-term planning. Such an approach enables more efficient and effective use of resources, while fulfilling legal obligations, delivering stakeholder needs and safeguarding the engineering integrity of the network. Through the effective use of asset management principles, we will aim to demonstrate value
for money by:

  • adopting a lifecycle approach to planning asset investment and management decisions
  • adopting a continuous improvement approach to asset management policies and practices
  • defining desired levels of service for highway assets in consultation with elected representatives

Supporting information

The Highway Asset Management Strategy

The strategy sets out how an asset management approach is utilised to support the achievement of the priorities within the Council Plan, as summarised above. The strategy takes into account current
and projected financial pressures and explains how available funds and resources will be utilised to maximise their benefit.

  • Well-managed Highway Infrastructure: A Code of Practice UK Roads Liaison Group 2016
  • Council Plan
  • Local Transport Plan