HS2… whats the point?
Very simply… The west coast main line is virtually full, so they need to do something. You can do some incrental improvements (as they did on the Trent Valley stretch) and it’ll cost billions whilst delivering a sticking plaster solution, or you can just start again with something that will not only be quicker, but far higher capacity, which is actually one of the biggest advantages of high speed rail.
The flight thing is a bit of a red herring IMO, there aren’t that many flights with pure domestic passengers, you won’t get a huge change there.Posted 4 years agobikebouyMember
They need to spend the cash on the current rail network and fix that POS first,mthen move to the road network and fix that, then and only then should anyone look at a pointless fast link for BBC execs who now need to get to London sharpish.
Roll on the next electionPosted 4 years agocloudnineSubscriber
If it’s extra capacity they need then why can’t they extend the platforms, add more carriages and maybe redesign the carriage to cram more people in. Or how about more flexible working hours so everyone doesn’t have to turn up at 9am and not all travelling at the same time. The government is cutting all sorts of other spending budgets, wages, pensions etc yet the overall spending hasn’t decreased.Posted 4 years agocrispoSubscriber
I went to a talk from the then Chairman of HS2 a few years ago.
The thing that struck me (as mentioned) is that the marketing for it is all wrong! With the WCML at capacity it had always been about increasing the capacity of the train lines. I think if people realised that rather than just thinking its 15mins of the train time it would be perceived a lot better.Posted 4 years agoaPMember
Extending existing platforms to allow more cars will probably require major track works, certainly signalling upgrades and probably power upgrade as well. Working on existing infrastructure keeping services running is costly and time consuming. It’ll probably be cheaper and quicker to build new.Posted 4 years agospooky_b329Member
If it’s extra capacity they need then why can’t they extend the platforms, add more carriages and maybe redesign the carriage to cram more people in.
Been in a train recently? I don’t think you can get many more into a train when the seats are 5 abreast (on commuter trains at least) and there are people standing on long distance routes. Platforms, again how do you extend a platform in the middle of a built up area, and you won’t gain many carriages.Posted 4 years agoMurrayMember
London to Leeds, Manchester and Newcastle are already faster than driving if you want to go city centre to city centre. Non city centre journeys are and will be slower e.g.Ealing to Knutsford.
The Manchester to London flights seem pretty full!
Freight moved off rail all through the 20th century but is now growing again. The capacity argument works but what cost is acceptable? The argument will go on and on.Posted 4 years agod4nnypMember
The modelling data is presuming growth year on year. They do not seem to be thinking about or factoring in any reduction in the demand due to differing work practices. It is entirely possible that less people will want or need to be traveling due to home/internet based work lives. People will always need to travel, and you can’t beat a face to face meeting. But it is probable that more and more people will be staying at and working from home.
Modelling of this type is always pretty flawed, and can be made to say what you want it to say.
I don’t know, HS2, its going to be crazy crazy money to build, and its unlikely to be even vaguely affordable to use when it is built. Its all very political and thats never a good thing.Posted 4 years agomuddy@rseguySubscriber
The problem is that doing anything to increase capacity on the railways is eye-wateringly expensive.
The bigger problem is that doing nothing is also mind-bendingly expensive but is far far easier and means that the problem just goes away for a bit and then comes back later only worse.
Oh and it’s £40billion for the whole project. The group that said last week that it was £80bn had, for some reason decided to include the costs of The cross rail project in their calculationsPosted 4 years ago
in order to make them look far more appealing to headline writers
Was hilarious listening to some politician on the radio saying that people currently don’t take the train but choose to fly to London from the north because it is quicker. No, they fly because IT IS CHEAPER. HS2 is not going to change this.
Depends: trains start from city centre stations, you don’t have to head out to an airport an hour away. You also don’t have to be there an hour beforehand to get through security, etc.
And given the choice (and a reserved seat), I’d much rather go by train, if the Spanish high-speed (AVE and Alvia) links are anything to go by they’re a lot more comfortable, better views, etc. (Conveniently ignoring the recent crash, of course…)Posted 4 years agoPigfaceMember
Why is the Government spending public money on the railways that were “privatised” the “privatised railways” that we still subsidise and who pay their shareholders a decent return and their bosses big salaries and bonuses.
Beechings cuts coming back to bite us hard, but hey everything is easy with hindsight.Posted 4 years ago
I think you kind of help make my own point, molgrim. Even with all the disadvantages you describe, lots of people still choose to fly…
Because there’s no HS train available. Certainly I don’t know of many people who would fly London – Brussels, not with HS+Chunnel. Likewise the people here who would get the early flight from Madrid-Barcelona all take the train these days, it’s just as fast and it leaves you in the city centre.Posted 4 years agomikertroidMember
Total waste of money. By investment in the existing network and improving disused links to key locations they could build this extra capacity for a fraction of the cost. Reopen key stations.
I believe a 15% capacity increase can be covered by improvement in the existing network.
It benefits those in London. That is why it’s happening. Pretty useless for those who require a decent provincial network. I’d quite like to have my contribution deducted from my tax as I know I will never ever use it or see its benefit.Posted 4 years agoeasyriderMember
It’s too London centric, for the business elite who don’t know how to use conference calls or skype. Yeah for overpaid BBC dubious types. Double decker coaches would help sort out the overcrowding issue : but what about the bridges ? It’s a complex problem, I suppose any investment in new rail schemes is a good idea as it takes the pressure of the roads. But London to Manchester, is that really what the country needs? What about those ‘sub-sprinter’ level trains that need gear changes on regional lines? What about he non-existent public transport in the other cities that are not London or Manchester? Maybe the Romanian influx we are expecting could be put to use building the tracks, OMG does that make me a racist or something??Posted 4 years agoMosesMember
What about the Hyperloop as an alternative?
With postulated costs of US$5 bn for a 400 mile much longer track, compared with £50bn + for HS2, it must be worth spending say £1bn on a proof of concept.
Hyperloop could be built above existing infrastructure to minimise disruption.
(PS, don’t criticize the engineering without reading the pdf, not just other comments)Posted 4 years agoFlaperonSubscriber
Oh and it’s £40billion for the whole project.
Except they don’t actually know how much it’s going to cost since they pulled the £40,000,000,000 figure out of their arse in the first place. Are we working to English billions or US billions, ‘cos there’s a bit of a difference?Posted 4 years agochvckMember
Are we working to English billions or US billions, ‘cos there’s a bit of a difference?
Not anymore there isn’t:
In British English, a billion used to be equivalent to a million million (i.e. 1,000,000,000,000), while in American English it has always equated to a thousand million (i.e. 1,000,000,000). British English has now adopted the American figure, though, so that a billion equals a thousand million in both varieties of English.ahwilesSubscriber
i live in sheffield, maybe we need fast trains to london, but we already have them, and they’re not full all the time.
but we definitely need quick trains to Manchester, Leeds and Beyond.
want to go to london? – 170 miles in 2 hours, this is fine.
want to go Manchester? – you may as well walk the 30 miles, you’ll get there faster than the train…
want to go to Edinburgh? – first you’ll need to drive to Gatwick, for a flight to Frankfurt, for another flight to Edinburgh.Posted 4 years agoPeyoteMember
The big advantages are likley to come when people start to realise that shifting freight by road is going to get a lot more expensive soon and the 90% decrease in rail freight over the past few decades will have to be reversed. That way you’ll all get clearer motorways and goods will still be quick and easy to shift by rail. It’s a win-win…
…except for the capital investment in the infrastructure, oh and Eddie Stobart will have to sell a few lorries and buy a few trains. Still it’s got to be better than spaffing it on new roads. That was a spectacular failure.Posted 4 years agoRioSubscriber
Just to put HS2 into perspective, the West Coast main line upgrade cost £9bn and seems to have achieved very little so £40-£50bn for a complete new line seems like a bargain to me. Rather than questioning the need for HS2 perhaps it would be more sensible to question why it costs so much to build anything in this country?Posted 4 years agoNorthwindSubscriber
mogrim – Member
The train takes over 2 hours, twice as long as the flight and just as expensive…
Not when you include check in and check out, and transit times to the airports!
I love to fly, but, even if the total moving time is identical your time when flying is far more disrupted- queue here to queue here to queue here. If you want to actually do something with your travel time- whether it’s working or just reading a book or having a snooze- then short-haul planes kind of suck.
(I spend the whole time looking out the window, but then I am a child)Posted 4 years agoDales_riderMember
mogrim – Member
But if you take the Leeds to London route, there IS a fairly high speed train available. The flights from LBA are full…
The train takes over 2 hours, twice as long as the flight and just as expensive…
Having been a regular commuter to London in the past I thought I’d check
Flying depart home 7:00 arrive central London 11:30, depart central London 17:30 arrive home 21:15.
14 hours and 6 hours in London
Drive to airport and park 40 minutes Parking £ 26.00
Cheapest flight return 1 hour £156.00
Arrive and check in 1.5 hours
Travel to London 30 minutes £ 30.00
Total 3:40 £212.00
Train Leave home 6:40 Arrive central London 10:00, depart central London 18:00 arrive home 21:20.
14.5 hours, 8 hours in London
Drive to station and park 10 Minutes Free
Fare 3 hours £186.00
Arrive and jump on train 5 minutes
Total 3:15 £186
I think some one needs to add up cost in time and all the other bits, I havent allowed for fuel which would only add more money to the Air FlightPosted 4 years ago
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