If today's high speed rail proposals become reality, High Speed Two would eventually be a 335-mile Y-shape, first connecting London to Birmingham - then Manchester and Leeds.
Faster links between London and our three biggest City Regions - Birmingham, Manchester, Leeds - should drive growth and boost jobs.Click on this map, for super-fast journey times from London Euston to:
- Manchester 1hr 20 (instead of 2 hrs 08)
- Birmingham 49 mins (instead of 1 hr 24)
- Edinburgh 3 hr 30 (instead of 4 hrs 30)
Leeds to Canary Wharf would take 1 hour 39 mins, via the Crossrail Interchange - instead of 2 hrs 58 now. Still quite a long commute, but certainly possible for a there-and-back meeting.
And here's a factsheet on the London to Birmingham line. Click on the map below for journey times from Birmingham to:
- Manchester 40 mins (instead of 1 hr 30)
- Newcastle 2 hr 20 (instead of 3 hrs)
- Leeds 1hr 05 (instead of 2 hrs)
Delivery of HS2 isn't very
Consultation will start on the London-Birmingham
line this autumn. Construction could start
after completion of Crossrail, from 2017 - with the line up and running by 2026.
Total infrastructure cost of the Birmingham-London line is estimated at £15-17 billion. Total cost for the whole Y network = £30bn.
The Conservatives are also committed to high-speed rail, but will have their own views on the precise route - and say they will start work two years earlier, in 2015.
Back in the real world, I'm off to Hastings tomorrow - that's going to take 1 hr 45 mins.