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Andrew George: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he will consult ministerial colleagues in the Department of Communities and Local Government to ensure that the Government take account of the findings of the Eddington report on (a) congestion and (b) avoidance of unnecessary journeys in formulating policy on future development of out-of-town grocery shopping venues. 
Gillian Merron: The Department for Transport works closely with the Department for Communities and Local Government to ensure planning and transport policies are integrated and contribute to promoting more sustainable travel choices. We will continue to do so in the event of any proposals for revising the provisions in Planning Policy Guidance 13 on the location of new retail development. This aims to reduce the need to travel, thereby contributing to avoid unnecessary journeys and reduce congestion in urban areas, which the Eddington study identifies as a priority.
Dr. Cable: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how much has been spent by his Department and its associated public bodies in order to achieve Gershon efficiency savings; whether these costs have been included in reports of headline efficiency savings; and if he will make a statement. 
Gillian Merron: Sir Peter Gershons independent report into public sector efficiency did not require that efficiencies be recorded net of costs and the Department for Transport has followed this advice. The Department does not hold central information on the total cost of achieving its efficiency gains going back to the start of the programme and such information could be obtained only at disproportionate cost.
Dr. Cable: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how much efficiency savings have been made in his Department and its associated public bodies as a result of the Gershon Review; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Grogan: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many contracts have been entered into by the Highways Agency and its predecessor under the terms and conditions of the fifth edition of the ICE conditions of contract since the publication of the sixth edition of the ICE conditions of contract in January 1991; and on what date the most recent such contract was entered into. 
Dr. Ladyman: A comprehensive answer could be provided only at disproportionate cost. However, the Highways Agency awarded at least 37 contracts above £5 million in value under the terms and conditions of the fifth edition of the ICE conditions of contract after January 1991. The most recent of these was awarded on 30 October 2001.
Mr. Drew: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what the five stages are which apply to the construction of a new piece of railway line; what stage the Kemble to Swindon line has reached; and what the timetable is for completion of that line. 
Mr. Tom Harris: The proposal to redouble the Swindon-Kemble single line is listed in Network Rails Business Plan 2006 as infrastructure investment under consideration by Network Rail. My hon. Friend should contact Network Rails Chief Executive at the following address for a response to his question.
40 Melton Street
London NW1 2EE
Dr. Ladyman: The Highways Agency is responsible for managing 19,173 lane kilometres of motorway which accounts for almost all of the motorway network in England. Responsibility for the motorway network in the rest of Britain lies with the Scottish Executive, the Transport Directorate of the Welsh Assembly, and the Northern Ireland Road Service.
Mr. Morley: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what guidance his Department gives to the (a) Highways Agency and (b) highway authorities on the use of non-slip road surfaces to minimise risks to motorcycles. 
Dr. Ladyman [holding answer 18 December 2006]: The Highways Agency has developed its own guidance on the use of non-slip road surfaces, which is published in the Agencys Design Manual for Roads and Bridges (standard HD 36, Surfacing Materials for New and Maintenance Construction) and the Specification for Highway Works (series 900). The guidance is aimed at minimising risks for all road users and does not segregate needs by vehicle types.
Local highway authorities set their own highways condition standards. Well-maintained Highways(TSO, 2005), the code of practice for highways maintenance management, reminds local authorities that the maintenance of adequate levels of skidding resistance is of particular importance for riders of motorcycles and encourages authorities to publish their skid resistance strategies.
Dr. Ladyman [holding answer 18 December 2006]: Substantial research was completed by the Highways Agency in the 1990s on the use of non-slip road surfaces. This has been used to establish the Agencys current standards and policy on their use on trunk roads. At present, the Agency is carrying out research to establish whether the condition of non-slip road surface sites can be assessed by survey machines travelling at traffic speed. This research is expected to be completed in April 2007.
Gillian Merron: Information that may be entered in the National Identity Register is specified at section 3 of, and schedule 1 to the Identity Cards Act 2006. This will be on the basis of fresh applications for registration when individuals apply for identity cards and there will be no bulk transfer of data to populate the National Identity Register. At present, the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency is in discussions with the Identity and Passport Service with regard to how information held by them could be used to verify identity in relation to future applications for a driving licence. However, no final decisions have yet been taken. There are currently no plans for any central Department for Transport datasets to be used to verify applications for registration on the NIR.
Mr. Hayes: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what the total liability to his Department would be in circumstances of immediate termination of all (a) public/private partnerships and (b) public finance initiative contracts. 
Gillian Merron: Voluntary termination of a PFI contract by the Secretary of State would result in compensation. The compensation would largely derive from loss of equity, outstanding senior and other debt and in respect of other outstanding liabilities of the PFI contractor to third parties. The calculation of these liabilities would vary from contract to contract.
PFI contracts may be terminated early for other reasons. This could include contractor default or force majeure. The contract terms that apply in these circumstances vary from those that would apply in the case of voluntary termination and are typically individually negotiated to reflect contract specific issues.
It is, therefore, not possible to calculate the Department's total PFI termination liability. The amount would vary from contract to contract, when the event occurred and may be subject to negotiation with the PFI contractor.
Mr. Peter Ainsworth: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what (a) local and (b) national targets have been set by his Department for the take-up of public transport since 1997; and what progress against each target has been made. 
Gillian Merron [holding answer 12 December 2006]: The Department does not set local targets for public transport. It does advise local authorities (outside London) that targets for 14 to 17 indicators (depending on local circumstances) should be included within their local transport plans. The indicators are listed in annexe A of the Department's Full Guidance on Local Transport Plans (December 2004), which is published on the Department's website. The levels of all targets set are matters for local authorities to determine within the context of their overall priorities.
Nationally, public service agreement (PSA) targets have been set every two years as part of the Spending Review. Since 1997 there have been four reviews: the 1998 Comprehensive Spending Review, and the 2000, 2002 and 2004 Spending Reviews.
Preparations for the Comprehensive Spending Review 2007 are now under way. Performance against all PSA targets is reported in the departmental annual report. Since 2002, performance has also been reported in the Department's autumn performance reports. These are available on the Department's website.
Gillian Merron: The number of journeys on Transport for Londons (and its predecessors) public transport servicesbuses, London Underground, Docklands Light Railway, Croydon Tramlinkover the last 10 years are as follows:
|Public transport journeys in London, annual totals 1995-96 to 2005-06|
|Bus||Underground||DLR||Croydon Tramlink( 1)||Total|
|(1) Croydon Tramlink opened in 2000.|
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