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hs2 Waste of Money or not?


PauloBarnesi
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Does anybody in Birmingham actually care about us being able to get to London faster than the 1 hour 15 mins that it takes already? Actually shocked how many people in Birmingham didnt even know what HS2 was yet its being pushed so much by the City I wondered what your thoughts were?

Generations of Farmers are getting complsory purchase orders not only where I live but all over the entire route, people are losing their homes and the country side is being destroyed.

The "estimated" cost including trains is nearly £21 Billion!! All this to get somewhere faster on a form of transport that in its current form is falling out of most peoples price range, I mean I can fly to some places cheaper than train! HS2 Ltd have also acknowledge that only wealthy travellers will be able to afford this train, it is not a train for the majority of British people.

For Brummies, we will get to London 20 mins faster yet HS2 have failed to tell people that if we want to get back to Birmingham we have to travel on the existing infrastructure, Virgin have siad that by the time this is completed that they will have caught up with HS2's journey time and be only 11 minutes slower than HS2.

We are in a recession, a big one at that, yet critical services are being cut, people losing jobs and homes and paultry amounts being given to young people into work. What ships we have left have no planes! Yet we can justify this money?

I have seen the arguments that it will create jobs, construction? great for migrant workers maybe? As for the building of the trains we have already seen our government allow one of the great British Train Builders be destroyed by giving work to Germany.

Against

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It doesn't seem like that great an idea but I have to disagree with your last point.

Big infrastructure projects are very good ideas during recessions. Putting money towards projects that create real jobs is a very good idea in a downturn, the Olympic Park and Westfield centre near me has been my main reason for job security the last couple of years and I imagine it is true of a lot of other people.

So whilst this might not be the best plan, getting (other?) projects started is a good idea, especially if private investment can come in to support the costs.

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Very much against. It's a huge waste of money that could be better spent elsewhere.

transport wise or generally ?

think this was discussed in another thread (probably a politics one) and I'd still like to see us invest in future technology if we were going to do something like this .... Maglev trains for example ( cue Bicks :-) )

maybe the proposal for the Thames hub airport project along with high speed rail links (and reasonable fares ) would help create jobs and boost British firms (always assuming the contracts aren't given to Siemens etc)

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It's about giving London a 6th airport. Birmingham International to Euston in 47 minutes or whatever it takes means that Birmingham Airport is about the same distance from central London timewise as Stansted.

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I think my issue with it is that it won't actually take cars off the road, which should be one of the primary purposes of any new public transport initiative in the world that we live in, particularly at the projected cost of HS2.

It is also definitely going to more expensive (it has been debated exactly how much more but one fears it will be a lot - considering an anytime day return from Birmingham is something around £100 already I dread to think!) than your typical hour and a half Virgin train from New St to Euston. With most commuters, I'd suspect, time is not really a huge priority when going from Birmingham to London, as nowadays many people do work on the actual train. People care about the cost ahead of the time it takes now that the internet is so accessible.

I just don't see the logic. Yes, it will create jobs, but it looks destined to run at a loss! How will this benefit the economy in that case?

As Baz Davies points out, the money would be far better spent if invested in improving the current catastrophe within the railways - pricing! Subsidising, or better still, nationalising the railways could get more people using trains at a lower cost, creating more trains and routes which in turn will result in more jobs. I'm certain the reason neither Labour nor the Conservatives have openly suggested this is due to the loss in petrol and car tax that would occur as a side-effect which is rather sad.

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Its not cars we need off the road first, its the HGV's, they are what break the roads, they are what clog up the motorways and that is the stuff that should be put back on the railways - goods. No other country I've ever been to has so much HGV crap on the roads

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This is one of those points of debate I honestly struggle to get worked up about.

I can't say I've particularly thought about the project. Everytime I've seen it on the telly the 'against' group seems to have largely disagreed with it because it'll spoil their view, or make some noise, and then at the end they drop in some rhetoric about it not working, which I guess may or may not be accurate.

I agree with LondonLax too. Big projects are usually a good idea in a poor economy, getting people working or at least just pushing money around into the economy is a good thing.

I guess the money could be put to better use in the rail network at large, but meh.

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And it will take HGVs off the road in theory. If passengers are moved from the WCML to HS2 then this frees up paths for freight to use the railway.

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Its not cars we need off the road first, its the HGV's, they are what break the roads, they are what clog up the motorways and that is the stuff that should be put back on the railways - goods. No other country I've ever been to has so much HGV crap on the roads

There is a massive project just starting up in the Thames gateway with the promise of doing just that for the south east at least.

Today most imported consumer goods from East Asia enter Britain in containers through Felixstowe or Southampton and travel on lorries along the A14 trunk road or the north-south A34 to a cluster of warehouses around Leicester and Ashby-de-la-Zouch. Streams of articulated lorries then ferry containers—some empty, others filled with waste paper and assorted rubbish—back to the ports for shipping to China. At the new port, containers can be transferred straight to warehouses (connected by rail link), with the cargo leaving in smaller loads going directly to the south-east’s shops. London Gateway claims this will save millions of miles of lorry journeys, equivalent to taking 2,000 vehicles a day off Britain’s roads.

The full story from The Economist

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Its not cars we need off the road first, its the HGV's, they are what break the roads, they are what clog up the motorways and that is the stuff that should be put back on the railways - goods. No other country I've ever been to has so much HGV crap on the roads

This as well.

Was thinking more along the lines of rail being the greener option yet HS2 offers very little green incentive that normal trains don't provide already at a greater cost.

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Waste of money, time isn't the commodity it once was with the ability to work from a computer on a train or at home... Money could be better spent electrifying routes that are much much slower than Brum/London.

Shouldn't be a high priority really, at all.

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And it will take HGVs off the road in theory. If passengers are moved from the WCML to HS2 then this frees up paths for freight to use the railway.

In theory maybe Rev but as pointed out my HS2 your normal train customer would not be who they will be aiming there client base on as it would be out of reach of their budget.

yes you can see these services being reduced but would people go over to freight by rail at all? if they did would would it be enough for us to even notice? and what would the job impact be on road freight companies who are already on the edge of going bust due to fuel costs?

As I have said, the job impact would help but who gets the work? who gets the contracts? From what I have read the majority of the money being made from this project is on time saving and I agree with the argument that with the world now being flat effectivly technolOgy based initiatives are better well utilised and better for the environment than HS2.

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agree with the comments about huge infrastructure projects actually being good for the economy, as the chinese say you builds roads out of recessions...

problem is thought because of the stupid EU rulings we abide by it wont be built by a british company and you can imagine some of europes big boys sniffing round this

look at crossrail - it'll cost £15bn to build and somehow will pump in £42bn to the economy but apart from enabling works and smaller aspects of it hardly any of the main construction is from the UK

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Generations of Farmers are getting complsory purchase orders not only where I live but all over the entire route, people are losing their homes and the country side is being destroyed.

And how much of the country is blighted by roads and cars? How many houses will be destroyed? Will the railway be as destructive as an A road or a motorway? Seems that a lot of noise is coming from the Conservative seats along the Chilterns.

Is it a waste of money? Depends what its compared to. Would it better to spend the money on improving the NHS? Improving the education system? On tax cuts? The money spent on this would have long term benefit, far beyond our lives.

Ultimately the line IMO should be the beginning of a widespread high speed network across the country.

Birmingham 1h 10m 0h 55m

Manchester 2h 08m 1h 06m

Leeds 2h 05m 1h 25m

Liverpool 2h 8m 1h 15m

Newcastle 2h 50m 1h 40m

Edinburgh 4h 05m 2h 06m

Glasgow 4h 20m 2h 32m

The benefits to Birmingham aren’t quite as impressive as the times to the rest of the country.

I also think that the who network needs improving; widespread electrification and investment.

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We absolutely need this, as a working project during the recession and to modernise our awful rail infrastructure.

We are a bit behind the times when it comes to high speed rail mainly because our lines weren't bombed to shit during the war and the whole Lord Beeching thing.

I would absolutely love to get on a train at Brum and be in Paris 3 hours later....

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For Brummies, we will get to London 20 mins faster yet HS2 have failed to tell people that if we want to get back to Birmingham we have to travel on the existing infrastructure, Virgin have siad that by the time this is completed that they will have caught up with HS2's journey time and be only 11 minutes slower than HS2.

Will they be building a brand new train for each journey to London? Or are they running them back empty?

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Why would you think the trains are only going to go one way? :suspect:

They will terminate in Birmingham near Curzon Street Station (by the Thinktank if you dont know that part of town too well) and there will be a big elevated walkway with an entrance/exit on Moor Street too. I doubt it will look exactly like this, but it is the image going around at the moment.

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