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Awards Case Study: Performance Improvement in the Public Sector

—27 July 2017
—Demonstration of improving the performance of existing business activities in various areas

This award demonstrates improving the performance of existing business activities in the areas of cost reduction, process design (in manufactures, service provision or support functions), capacity sharing and quality assurance, most frequently deriving benefits in efficiency and positive impacts on the bottom line.

Congratulations to this year's winners, Arup with London Overground.


Last year 184 million people travelled on the London Overground (LO) network; up from 34 million in 2007. With London’s population set to increase by 1.8 million by 2030, which equates to an extra tube train full of people every three days, the capital’s rail infrastructure is being stretched. Since opening, LO has been instrumental in the public transport network, creating new connections across the capital. Wanting to deliver reliable service to its customers, whilst keeping up with the ever-growing demand, LO knew it had to proactively address its capacity before overcrowding hindered their ability to deliver a trustworthy and comfortable service to passengers.

Arup was engaged on this £326 million project, initiated by Transport for London (TfL), named the London Overground Capacity Improvement Programme (LOCIP). Working as the system safety advisors, Arup was there not only to advise LO on the safety risks to the public, passengers and workforce, but to perform bespoke risk assessments, undertake the development of risk registers, and coordinate with the various stakeholders to ensure that all risks identified were managed to as low as reasonably practicable (ALARP) to allow work to commence.

Arup was appointed to carry out risk management across all work streams to deliver LOCIP. The team developed clear risk management plans which detailed how they would go about tackling the project, its deliverables, key milestones and most importantly how they would engage with the various stakeholders. The objectives for Arup’s risk team supported LO’s business case that they required 25% more capacity for 57 new trains - meaning two depots and 25 station platforms required improvements and extensions to accommodate the new longer trains. The new trains would also fulfil all six pillars of the Mayor’s transport strategy. All works had to be carried out whilst the Overground was fully functional and minimise disruption to passenger journeys.

As a result of Arup’s work, including engaging the risk management process, and embedding and implementing safety documentation carried out by others, all external safety approvals were in place to allow for the new trains to commence operations in line with the challenging programme. Other wider outcomes to LO include:

  • Five carriage trains are now in operation across both the North and East London Lines
  • Delivered a further 25% capacity to travellers
  • Attained the most reliable network in London title
  • Achieved 95% punctuality on Network Rail’s public performance measure (PPM)
  •  Received 91% customer satisfaction in National Rail’s Passenger Focus survey

Increased ridership means that the network has been able to increase revenue to reinvest back into maintaining the high-quality network. LOCIP also won the Major Capital Project of the Year at the Continuity Insurance and Risk (CIR) awards, which recognises Arup and LO’s collaborative working.

London’s residents and visitors now enjoy more space and can rely on the LO network to get them where they need to be, comfortably, safely and most importantly on time.

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