OK, so now we have another report on the progress with HS2 – and its increasingly vast cost. The NAO have said this today:
Perhaps worse still is the timescale to achieve HS2 – which as we know is intended to connect the South with the North, by way of Birmingham, Manchester and Leeds. But the costs for Phase 1 alone – just to get to Birmingham seems to be well over £30 billion. The programme is certainly optimistic about the benefits, but amongst the key facts in the NAO report is the date with which this high-speed passenger line will reach the major cities in the North of England – 2040 seems to be the prospective far end date.
Phase 1 – getting to Birmingham shows some interesting spend to achieve the extra capacity that the new line will create – and as yet, no costs for the trains themselves.
The papers – naturally have their take on what is going on – especially on the funding front – and combined with the ever increasing strain on local and regional services, it is a wonder that by the time HS2 reaches Manchester it will remain relevant at all.
- HS2 late and billions over budget due to Tory failures, report finds
- HS2: Parliament ‘seriously misled’ over costs for high-speed rail network, report finds
- High Speed Two: A progress update
- National Audit Office makes HS2 recommendations
- National Audit Office reveals uncertainty over HS2 costs