A government project to provide motorists real-time traffic updates on busy roads is considerably over-budget and took twice as long as expected.
The project which was conducted under a public private partnership (PPP) by the Highways Agency failed to exercise effective control over external advisors according to Edward Leigh MP, chairman of the public accounts committee (PAC), today.
The Highways Agency also failed to take into account the full possibility that costs under a conventional procurement route might have been lower than expected.
In the end, the agency spent £15.5 million on advisers, more than five times what was expected.
A lack of competitive competition caused by potential bidders opting was partly to blame for failings, MPs claim.
Another consequence of this was a fall in the price paid by the selected bidder Gene SYS.
A number of Conservative MPs such as Oliver Heald have questioned the value of the National Road Telecommunications Services, calling for answers about its implications
The Highways Agency justified the PPP approach because it transferred the risks of major cost and time overruns inherent in large telecommunications projects.
The National Road Telecommunications Services which gives information to drivers about traffic jams and delays promises great things and in terms of giving detailed information, the PAC said.