Institute for Transport Studies (ITS)

HS2 and the railway network: the need for a review

There is in practice a much wider range of policy options which should have been considered to meet these objectives. These include improvements to reduce the adverse impacts of HS2, alternative high-speed routes better integrated with the classic network, lower-speed but better-connected rail enhancements, investments within the North of England, and other lower-cost interventions. 

Experts in the fields of economics, engineering, planning, regional development and transport have concluded that these policy options must now be reviewed objectively, transparently and dispassionately against a set of scenarios reflecting the inherent uncertainties in economic and technological developments. This will take time and will inevitably involve some delay to the implementation of HS2, should it be broadly endorsed by the review. The delay should be minimised as far as possible, but should not be used as a reason for pressing ahead unquestioningly with a scheme that has attracted so much expert criticism.

The report summarises the conclusions of a workshop convened to discuss these issues, involving experts with a wide range of views. 

Contact: Professor Tony May (ITS)

Download the report. Read more via BBC News.