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HS2 could cost up to £22bn more than thought

It could also be delayed by seven years

Published by the Mix96 News Team at 12:54pm 3rd September 2019. (Updated at 1:13pm 5th September 2019) 3-minute read.

HS2 could cost up to £22bn more than thought

HS2 could cost up to £22bn more than its previous budget and may be delayed by seven years.

That's what the company building the high-speed railway has said in an announcement this afternoon (3rd Sep).

The future of the long-running project was thrown into doubt last month after it was revealed that an independent review will consider whether and it should continue.

In a written statement to parliament, Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said HS2 chairman Allan Cook does not believe that the project can be delivered within the budget of £55.7bn.

Instead, it is estimated that the project needs a total budget "in the range of £72bn to £78bn", Mr Shapps added.

The transport secretary also said Mr Cook does not believe phase one of HS2 can be delivered by 2026, and instead recommends a "staged opening" between 2028 to 2031.

Initial services would run between London Old Oak Common and Birmingham Curzon Street, followed by services to and from London Euston later, Mr Shapps said.

The minister added that Mr Cook expects Phase 2b of HS2 - the full high-speed line to Manchester and Leeds - to open between 2035 and 2040.

You can read more HS2 stories here.

Today's written statement by the Secretary of State for Transport about the HS2 project has been welcomed by Rt Hon Dame Cheryl Gillan, MP for Chesham and Amersham

Dame Cheryl said:

" At last, having been fighting for ten years on behalf of constituents in Chesham & Amersham as well as others up and down the proposed route, we now have a moratorium.

" This could be the light at the end of the tunnel which is not the train coming towards us but could mark the end of HS2 if common sense prevails!

"Over the years I have given evidence on behalf of constituents damaged by this project, defended the environment and the AONB against the devastation proposed by HS2 Ltd., raised hundreds of issues about the mismanagement and terrible treatment of people affected by the project and I have continuously pointed out the lack of a credible and viable business case, as well as challenging HS2's outrageous costs and the concealment of information on the project.

"There has been a huge cost in terms of human capital as well as and to the taxpayer.

"We require a comprehensive overall transport policy and infrastructure plan for the UK which ensures that taxpayers' money is spent on a modern integrated transport and communications plan.

"HS2 belongs in the last century and now we need to embrace the new technology which requires a comprehensive plan, not an isolated point to point railway.

"I welcome this announcement and the review of HS2, announced last month, and I will continue to scrutinise this project. I would be pleased to hear from constituents who would like to make a contribution to any submission that I will make to the review by Doug Oakervee, whom I am planning to meet shortly."

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