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Published on : Friday, August 12, 2016
Neil Sachdev and Steve Smith have a combined 73 years’ experience working in the UK’s property and regeneration sector and have between them managed large-scale retail, mixed-use and housing developments, significant programmes of investment and divestment and regeneration projects.
The appointments follow the announcement in April 2016 that Network Rail had given its specialist transport property business, Network Rail Property, greater independence by establishing a Property Board which will approve and make recommendations about investments in and disposals of Network Rail’s estate and property assets.
The new structure and governance arrangement will enable Network Rail to increase its property activities to help generate £1.8bn to fund the Railway Upgrade Plan by disposing of various assets. The Railway Upgrade Plan is Network Rail’s investment plan for Britain’s railways. It is designed to provide more capacity, relieve crowding and respond to the tremendous growth Britain’s railways continue to experience.
The new Property Board will also provide greater focus on plans to deliver land for housing, while continuing to generate income from Network Rail’s other property assets to reinvest into the railway.
Chris Gibb, chair of Network Rail’s Property Board, said: “The new Property Board will allow the wider company to focus on improved services for passengers and protect the efficient operation of a safe, reliable and growing railway. It will also enable the property business to continue to create extraordinary places from our unique asset portfolio and make stations destinations in their own right.”
David Biggs, managing director of Network Rail Property, said: “Our new non-executive directors are both leading UK property experts who will bring hugely valuable commercial experience to our business. I look forward to working with them to continue to unlock land for homes, drive economic growth in towns and cities and reinvest money into the rail network to help fund the Railway Upgrade Plan.”