Rail (UK)

HS2 east­ern leg

- Business · Infectious Diseases · Health Conditions · Department for Transport · Crewe · Manchester · Leeds · United Kingdom Department for Transport

Lord Ado­nis claims that Govern­ment is “seek­ing to in­def­i­nitely de­lay and quite pos­si­bly can­cel” HS2’s east­ern leg.

There is a clear case for press­ing ahead with HS2 de­spite the ef­fects of the COVID-19 pan­demic, ac­cord­ing to Baroness Vere.

Re­ply­ing to a Lords Writ­ten ques­tion from Lord Wal­ney on Novem­ber 9, ask­ing if any as­sess­ment had been made re­gard­ing as­sump­tions about pas­sen­ger num­bers be­ing af­fected by the pan­demic, Vere said it has not yet been pos­si­ble to un­der­take spe­cific anal­y­sis to de­ter­mine COVID-19’s im­pact on HS2.

She blamed the rapid de­vel­op­ment and un­cer­tain out­come of the virus as rea­sons for not yet car­ry­ing out this work.

How­ever, she told Wal­ney:

“The Depart­ment for Trans­port is work­ing with col­leagues across Govern­ment to un­der­stand the im­pact on trans­port de­mand and the pan­demic’s wider ef­fect on the econ­omy, and how this will af­fect fu­ture busi­ness cases for trans­port in­fra­struc­ture in­vest­ment.

“The Full Busi­ness Case for Phase 1, pub­lished in April, looked at both high- and low-de­mand sce­nar­ios, un­der­pinned by pop­u­la­tion and eco­nomic growth fore­casts. That anal­y­sis showed that even in a sce­nario where de­mand is rel­a­tively low, there is still a clear case for press­ing ahead with HS2.”

She said Govern­ment was con­fi­dent that the strate­gic busi­ness case for the sub­se­quent stages to Crewe, Manch­ester and Leeds re­mains clear.

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