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High Speed Rail Link Go-ahead

Hurrah, big fast choo-choo on the way - in twenty years

Published on January 10th 2012.

High Speed Rail Link Go-ahead

THE GOVERNMENT has given the go-ahead to the HS2 high speed rail project.

"At present values, it will generate benefits of up to £47bn and fare revenues of up to £34bn over a 60-year period," she said in a statement.

The first £16.4bn phase will run between London and Birmingham, cutting the journey times to 49 minutes.

Extra lines taking the service to Manchester and Leeds should be finished by 2033. It is expected to cut journey times between Manchester and London to 73 minutes.

The announcement was welcomed by Mike Blackburn, chair of the Greater Manchester Local Enterprise Partnership.

He said: "High Speed Rail is crucial to the future of UK plc. It will ensure that cities such as Manchester remain economic powerhouses of Britain as well as creating and securing thousands of jobs across the region.

"The city's current rail infrastructure, whilst greatly improved in recent years, cannot match the impressive pace at which Manchester continues to develop.

"We need a rail network the envy of other countries around the world and improved connectivity with London will open up a whole range of additional business opportunities."

Andrew Stokes, chief executive of Marketing Manchester, said: "Quite simply, the city deserves high speed rail.

"Manchester is the economic powerhouse of the north of England and the only alternative UK engine of the economy to London. It has achieved this in spite of a rail infrastructure that was designed in the pre-Victorian era."

Transport secretary Justine Greening said it would be the most significant transport infrastructure project since the building of the motorways and the first major new railway line since the Victorian era.

"At present values, it will generate benefits of up to £47bn and fare revenues of up to £34bn over a 60-year period," she said in a statement.

Extra tunnelling has been introduced to appease protestors who say the line will ruin the countryside.

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15 comments so far, continue the conversation, write a comment.

the Whalley RangerJanuary 10th 2012.

Hahaha - twenty years! i.e. they've got 'the vision' but not the money.

Will use German French Spanish Chinese et al trains until they get their heads round it, shall I?

All talk no action - just like the 'green' agenda.

2 Responses: Reply To This...
Calum McGJanuary 11th 2012.

It was only approved yesterday - give them a chance?!

the Whalley RangerJanuary 11th 2012.

I am all for it but the timeline is extremely worrying.

As we read in today's press, council pension pots are to be tapped for infrastructure projects.

BratwurstJanuary 10th 2012.

20 years? We've rebuilt the ENTIRE east of Germany in ten: roads, hospitals, schools, everything.

Mao Tse-TungJanuary 10th 2012.

Commity democracy doesn't work!

AnonymousJanuary 10th 2012.

It would make more sense to reverse the Beeching cuts.

1 Response: Reply To This...
SiJanuary 10th 2012.


UnaPlannerJanuary 10th 2012.

Great news for the airport - Not.

The airport is supposed to be the economic powerhouse of the region, but watch the airlines withdraw regional services once you can travel to London in 73 minutes.

Manchester will just become a far flung suburb of the Metropolis without its own sense of identity - the Basingstoke of the North!

3 Responses: Reply To This...
Man in a shedJanuary 10th 2012.

The effect of HS2 on regional domestic airline services will be fairly marginal. What little point to point traffic there is may transfer to rail, but people (and airlines) will still prefer to interline at Heathrow rather than make a connection at Old Oak Common onto Crossrail.

Anyway, what's the difference in economic terms between people flying to London or getting the train?

AnonymousJanuary 10th 2012.

Would that be in the same way that Barcelona is just a far flung suburb of Madrid, or Lyon of Paris? What makes more sense is for the high speed line to go via the airport and that way it creates integrated transport, and help ensure it remains the economic powerhouse of the region.

espoirJanuary 12th 2012.

airports don't have a future anyway because the oil is running out

Andrew GardinerJanuary 10th 2012.

who wants to go to London, anyway?

2 Responses: Reply To This...
AnonymousJanuary 10th 2012.

But think of the bliss of getting back home in an hour when you have to go the godforsaken dump!

Calum McGJanuary 11th 2012.

I do. I love it. Plenty of culture and cool stuff to do down there. Friends to see. Things to learn. Then pop back to my home in Manchester, without the fuss of living in London. Great!

espoirJanuary 12th 2012.

The proposals do not include bringing the Eurostar from Paris and Brussels. You would still have to cross London on the underground with kids and suitcases. No thanks. Very short sighted proposals indeed. We need through trains to the continent.

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