On October 31 the UK's Office of Rail & Road published its final determination approving infrastructure manager Network Rail's £34.7bn spending plan for Control Period 6, the five-year funding cycle starting on April 1 2019. This builds on the High-Level Output Specifications outlining what the government wants from the network and Statements of Funds Available. The CP6 plan is the first since Network Rail was reclassified as a public sector body, limiting access to commercial financing, and the first since it was restructured into eight geographical Routes with devolved responsibilities. Each Route will have its own budget, plans and performance monitoring, and will be able to buy goods and services locally rather than centrally. Approved spending includes £7.7bn for maintenance and £16.6bn for renewals, with renewals spending up 17% on CP5. The Performance Innovation Fund has been increased to £40M to support ideas to improve punctuality, and there is a £245M R&D fund. Spending on network-wide System Operator timetabling and planning functions almost doubles to more than £270M.
Railway Gazette International, Dec. 2018. p.8.