HS2 in Hansard 23/03/2015

TRANSPORT

HS2 Update

The Secretary of State for Transport (Mr Patrick
McLoughlin): Following the publication of”’HS2: On
track”[1] on 12 March which set out the good progress
we have made on HS2 over the last five years, I thought
it would be helpful to give an update on the latest
project developments.
The hybrid Bill for the first phase of HS2 is making
good progress through Parliament. By the end of today
the High Speed Rail (London-West Midlands) Select
Committee will have sat for 76 days and heard almost
400 petitions, almost twice as many as the Crossrail
Committee heard in 21 months of sittings. I am sure the
whole House willwelcome the commitment and seriousness
with which the Committee has gone about the very
important task of ensuring that the project strikes the
right balance between the needs of affected communities
and the environment, and the long-term needs of the
country as a whole.
We are continuing to develop our plans for the
redevelopment of Euston station and are working with
the local community to ensure we keep disruption to a
minimum. On 18 March we signed an agreement with
the London Borough of Camden that fulfils our pledge
to social rented tenants affected by Euston’s redevelopment.
We have now ensured that replacement housing will be
available for all 136 social rented properties in Camden
affected by HS2.
On 20 March we published a report on the Northern
Transport Strategy. Developed jointly with Transport
for the North, the strategy sets out our ambition for a
world class northern transport system, as well as the
concrete stepswe are taking to get there. The Government
have already committed £13 billion of investment to
improving connectivity across the north. The report set
out how we will work with Transport for the north to
build on this investment, including developing a new
“TransNorth” rail system to slash journey times between
major northern cities and taking immediate action to
simplify rail fares across the north.
In addition to this, I have set out my commitment to
get HS2 to the north sooner, delivering benefits to
businesses and individuals more quickly. Therefore, subject
to further analysis and decisions on the preferred route,
I intend to prepare a dedicated hybrid Bill to lay during
the next Parliament with a view to bringing HS2 to
Crewe earlier than planned.
Finally,we havemoved another step forward to realising
our ambition of creating a world-class railway, with the
appointment by HS2 Ltd of award winning designer
Sadie Morgan as the Chair of an independent design
panel, which will advise on the delivery of the HS2
Design Vision, published today. This will set the bar for
all future HS2 design.
I welcome this progress and am pleased to be able to
report that the momentum of the HS2 project remains
strong to deliver a railway which will be an engine for
growth in our country.
[1] Department for Transport (2015), HS2: On track,
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