HS2 - For or against?
So, the govt have announced the next part of the HS2 line whilst telling NIMBYs to shut up in no uncertain terms.
People are discovering their homes are being labelled as zero value by mortgage lenders, and a number of homes are right in the path, including listed buildings.
What do we all think of it?
Should it go ahead because investment in infrastructure has been shown time and time again to be a massive boon for the economy? Or is that argument somewhat moot due to the fact it'll take them 20 years to build?
Personally, I'm of the view that it should be built. Not because it'll being the benefits the government think it will as soon as it opens, but because the longer term benefits of it - more rail capacity for a growing population. The current rail system was built in Victorian times, and it exists in a very different form now than it did then, but the general structure exists.
The amount of money that gets wasted is huge when it comes to government, but building something like this is a proper asset that will only grow in value over time.
If it's done right then yes, brilliant.
But, this is England..... It will not be completed in time and it will be over budget. Oh, and I bet the ticket prices will be a joke!
Not because it's a bad idea; I actually think that the stated reasons for it's construction make some sense (though I have read that similar projects elsewhere have shown that people in the less affluent regions end up travelling to the affluent ones to make money rather than people from the affluent regions travelling outwards to spread the wealth). I'm against it because it will be used as an excuse for Dave and George to grant big fat contracts to their mates funded by us, the tax payers. In addition, as far as I can tell, after we've paid for it the line will be run privately - so another mate makes all the money. George was comparing the project to the railway building in Victorian times, but those were built and financed by the people who were going to be making the money from the lines - not by the tax payer.
I'm all for more railway capacity but whilst I'm not exactly against this, I'm not hugely for it either.
It's going to take an absolute age to build, and in some cases doesn't seem to reduce the journey time by a huge amount (though I am thinking of journey times from London only) eg London to Newcastle in 138 rather than 172 minutes...doesn't seem earth shattering to me considering how much it will cost. That said London to Manchester in an hour or so is a big improvement.
Also surely once it is built, a two tier system will exist, the new line will be very expensive, and the current lines become the cheaper alternative, leaving no real benefit for most people? Though if they are planning to divert all passenger trains onto the new line, fair enough. And because it's Britain, and train travel is stupidly expensive, how will it deter people from flying instead? Unless they're just banking on the fact air travel will have become much more expensive by 2030
Go for it, compo for the home owners and farmer. Country needs it.
For me - doesn't really make a difference being down South - if I ever travel to the north I tend to drive anyway.
Against the idea; Taxpayers right across the UK will be paying to improve the travelling time for a relatively small number of business people who will use the service & it will allow companies based in London to close down branch offices in northern cities & support them from London. A better idea would be to increase freight capacity nationally & build more freight depots to allow local distribution and get lorries off the trunk roads.
Ok, those saying put the money into existing infrastructure, how would you suggest that is done?
The West Coast Main Line is almost at capacity last time I checked, for example, so improving that would mean adding more rails there instead - especially if you want to add more freight to the system. That'd cost more than HS2 anyway, due to it going through cities/built up areas where there isn't any expansion room.
If it were put in to the motorway system etc... it has been shown that this doesn't work properly as the roads just fill up very quickly again - we need to get more people on public transport.
its a nice idea in theory (but as above i tend to drive anyway)
Originally Posted by glennda
IF they renationalise or at least get bus/train companies to work together so we can have some sort of accountable intergrated network (thats reliable) then its good but if its just being done cos they can its pointless. Rail round here isnt that bad except the rolling stock and reliability (last time i went to leeds from doncaster for a training course in the 5 days i went the 1st train diddnt arrive on time once missing the connection, from a brief chat with the guard that train is always like that as the timetable is over optomistic) the south east seem to get the new trains we end up with rotbox single carriage dmus that should of been scrapped decades ago.
im also not sure the planned route makes much sense nor having sheffields station at murderhell yes there is plenty of land but it then means a change of trains and await then another journey.
Both West Coast and East Coast Main lines are pretty much at capacity now and because of the nature of their building it is extremely difficult to increase the capacity.
Improvements have been made by improving the infrastructure and signalling and by having faster trains, but there is only so much that can be done to the existing lines.
Because the lines are shared between fast inter city trains, slower regional trains and freight then this also has an impact. You can only go as fast as what is in front of you!
HS2 will cost a lot and may not be pretty in places, but it's better than the equivalent motorway!
Make it cheaper than driving, more reliable and as convenient as possible.
Originally Posted by localzuk
I don't think that the HS2 will encourage use of public transport apart from those who need to get to its limited stops in hurry and who can afford what is likely to be a steep price.
Making it cheaper - how?
Originally Posted by LeMarchand
Making it more reliable - how?
Convenient - how?
Saying those things is fine and dandy, but without thoughts as to how to do them they're not really gonna do anything. At least with HS2 they are increasing capacity which potentially means those people who travel from those far away places can get to London and back easier meaning more capacity on the trains that remain (so less standing up). It could also mean that more freight could be shifted there if actual services can be removed etc...
Just to be selfish for moment; I live in Leicestershire which will be ploughed through, homes and businesses destroyed and the Roxhill Freight Depot which will create 6000 jobs will probably be cancelled.
We don't even get a stop. The closest is in the middle of nowhere in Totan (midway between Nottingham and Derby).
This just to shave a few mins of journey time?
We have been promised an upgrade to the Midland Mainline for years, finally investing in this will improve journey times and increase capacity.
Living in Hillingdon it will wipe out a fair few houses, cross roads, and take out my OH work which "may" relocate all for a business model that doesnt make sense with the number of passengers they are forecasting. There are many white elephants out there, this may be one of them.
I was listening to a local radio interview last night and they were saying that much of the investment by new companies creating new sites and new jobs is being diverted/cancelled/put on hold whilst HS2 is finalised and is likely to be cancelled and moved to other areas all together.
Personally I don't see the need for it. If our major cites were further away as they are in other EU countries I could see the need to cut down the journey times but all we will be doing is creating another layer of elite transport that will be priced solely at the business user but paid for by the tax payer. Am I really going to want to spend an extra god knows how much for a ticket to skim 20 minutes off a journey, no, I don't think so.