2nd November 2016: The Government is being misadvised on the benefits of the HS2 route between West Yorkshire and London, according to Civil Engineering Principal of High Speed UK Colin Elliff.
The Yorkshire HS2 Communities Report published today, commissioned by residents in affected areas, outlines that the current HS2 proposal could harm the quality of life for residents across Yorkshire.
With alternative high speed rail routes such as High Speed UK (HSUK), which would result in superior connectivity and enhanced capacity to Yorkshire, the Government must ensure it commits to the best possible scheme for Yorkshire and the entire country.
Colin Elliff said: “HS2 has had the challenge of delivering hugely enhanced capacity and connectivity for the national rail network – but all they are actually designing is a high-speed line along one particular corridor and they are expecting everyone else to conform with that to provide their own connections to it. As a whole, it just doesn’t hang together as a system.
“It has been designed primarily to get more people to London faster, and that’s only going to make London more prosperous, not the North.
“The need for improved East to West links across the Pennines, which is actually the true priority in Yorkshire, has been ignored.
“There has also been no attempt to coordinate HS2 with HS3 and all the work we have done at High Speed UK shows that if you actually design the two together, North to South connectivity, and East to West, you will get a far cheaper route to build with far greater connectivity.”
Jonathan Pile, co-ordinator of Yorkshire Against HS2, said: “West Yorkshire, Crofton, Hemsworth and areas around Wakefield are going to be devastated with lots of demolition, lots of noise and lots of property blight.”
Colin Elliff added: “The establishment has fixed itself on one idea and now they are desperately trying to justify it against attacks from everywhere. The public knows HS2 doesn’t work.
“Grayling shouldn’t take the first scheme he is offered, but instead the Government must engage with the alternatives. If Chris Grayling is going to commit to spending £50 billion or £60 billion on a rail scheme, he needs to make sure it is the right one.”
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