The impact of transport infrastructure projects on sustainable development within a major logistics gateway in North West England

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Abstract

In the North West of England the issue of a perceived infrastructure gap is of increasing concern. Investment needs to be made to improve the transport infrastructure of the region if it is to be expected to promote the development of its own regional logistics gateway. Funding tools have been set up to address the challenges arising from the imbalance in infrastructure development that exists between regions in the north of the United Kingdom and those in the south. For regions with well developed economies the outlook is promising as the availability of modern transport infrastructure looks set to improve. However, some sources believe that the development of new transport infrastructure will have a negative impact upon sustainable development. It is expected that this will occur in a range of both direct and indirect ways. As a result, it is critical that planning for the creation of new intermodal transport infrastructure, or the upgrading of that which already exists, takes into account the impact that these developments will have on the sustainable development of the host region. A scenario based development methodology is proposed in this paper. It was developed to provide a way to identify potential scenarios that may arise within a given region as a result of transport infrastructure projects. To create significant scenarios the methodology is dependent on the availability of a sufficient quantity of quality data. For this paper that data was collected through a focus group composed of stakeholders from the region in question. This was further supported by the performance of an impact survey using the same group of stakeholders.

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