The Highways Agency plans to implement an asset management system to improve data on the state of England’s roads.

The system, which will cost up to £80 million, will be used to create clearer tracking of the maintenance of roads, bridges, paths, cycle lanes and street lighting, and other roadside assets, worth around £75 billion.

In a contract notice issued last week the Highways Agency, which manages all of England’s large roads, said it wanted a single operator to develop and maintain the system under a four year contract. It said it “preferred” the system to be based on off-the-shelf products and tailored to the agency’s needs.

The system is required to help the agency meet tough targets for road maintenance.

It “will collect and manage data and information on the roadside network assets including roads, bridges and other structures, earth-works, drainage, street lighting, footways and cycle ways, electrical equipment, vehicle safety restraints, signs, signals [and] environmental elements”, the agency stated.

Key functions of the system will include asset inventory, cost and maintenance modelling, operations, strategic reporting, and data interchange with other government agencies’ systems. Highways Agency staff at remote locations will also be able to access the system on fixed and mobile PCs.

The agency's IT infrastructure is run by Atos Origin under a £75 million five year deal signed in 2008.