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HS2 and Birmingham regeneration, part two​

money In April 2013, the Daily Telegraph reported that 507 people were employed directly by Crossrail Limited on the “£15 billion” cross-London rail scheme. Yesterday, the Guardian reported that 1,500 HS2 staff would be employed at its ‘construction headquarters’ in Birmingham. It seems that the real HS2 Ltd headquarters is to stay in London, but exactly how many employees would continue to be based in the capital has not been revealed. If the “£15 billion” Crossrail 1 had a direct headcount of around…

The HS2 Committee wraps up for the summer following locus standi hearings​

select committee The HS2 Bill committee held its final session before breaking for the summer this week. They will next be meeting again on 1st September with a future programme of hearings due to be published shortly. This side of the summer, the committee has dealt with the challenges to ‘locus standi’ (entitlement to be heard by the committee), with all but one of the challenges having their claim for the right to be heard refused by the committee. Significantly, the one petitioner…

‘HS2 is not a certainty’: Work begins on new housing block in middle of demolition zone​

Camden Market A new housing and office block is being built right in the middle of the HS2 demolition zone. Granby House, in Granby Terrace, was given planning permission in 2008 – before the £50billion railway plan was announced. Neighbours on the Regent’s Park Estate have described the building work as “curious” because they are being told that the neighbouring blocks will soon be torn down. HS2 Ltd is proposing to demolish the whole area in 2017 so that it can bring…

“Go forth and regenerate, but there’s no money for it.”, Government tells HS2 cities​

kingsash The Government have today, Thursday 24th July, have responded to the HS2 Growth Taskforce’s recommendations, which were published in March. In a response that agrees with the HS2 Growth Task Force that local plans should be set up, the government fails to allocate any new spending for this. Local resources will be expect to be used include from existing budgets. There will be no money from central government.  In a worrying development, the government, who sold HS1 to a foreign pension fund, says they will help…

Birmingham and HS2 jobs – “what could be likely”​

HS1 wall_6 The HS2 roadshow hit Birmingham yesterday with the promise of jobs much in evidence, that is until the the claims faced examination. The most revealing comment came from Andy Street of the Local Enterprise Partnership who referred to the quoted figure of 1,500 as "what could be likely." What was certain is the fact that the proposed HS2′s marshalling yard has wiped out the chance to create up to 7,000 private sector jobs at Washwood Heath. Speaking ahead of a Commons…

Liam Byrne: My statement on the announcement of the HS2 Construction HQ in Birmingham​

liam byrne “HS2 belongs in Birmingham. The arrival of 1,500 permanent jobs is fantastic news, and it provides a welcome boost to the growth of our City.   But this announcement underlines the need for a new deal for East Birmingham where the HS2′s marshalling yard has wiped out the chance to create 3,500 private sector jobs.   So today I’ve written to David Higgins, Chariman of HS2 Ltd, to begin talks on how we maximise the jobs boost for East Birmingham.”…

HS1′s Economic Effects on Kent still unassessed​

hs2 line with fence_5 In a recent set of Transport questions, then Transport Minister Stephen Hammond admitted that the government had still not published an assessment of HS1 in Kent.  He was still felt able to confidently predict massive benefits from HS2 (although one wonders whether he was able to predict his tenure in the DfT was nearly over). This contrasts with the view of Professor Roger Vickerman of the University of Kent Professor, who told a Transport Select Committee Inquiry: Professor Vickerman: I think most…

HS2 – a case so compelling the government feels it necessary to silence voices challenging the project​

committee room MPs on the Hybrid Bill Select Committee decided this week they would allow Stop HS2 and HS2 Action Alliance (HS2AA) to be heard, as ensuring the process is seen to be fair is in the public interest. In a statement Robert Syms MP, chair of the committee, said: “On balance, we believe that a modern view of locus standi should allow some latitude to petitioners on how they chose the present their case. The decision frustrated government attempts to prevent…

People power wins out over HS2 campaign groups’ right to speak​

parliament interior Petitioners will now have the right to speak out against the HS2 Hybrid Bill, after the government’s solicitors argued that they should not be heard. Representitives from Stop HS2 had been told that they did not represent anyone affected by the proposed scheme, so the organisations asked members and supporters to send in letters of support, saying that they did think that Stop HS2 represents them. In just a couple of days, 237 such letters from individuals, action groups, residents…

Blow as government refuses to support Camden-backed HS2 Euston station design​

mcloughlin Efforts to save hundreds of Camden residents from seeing their homes demolished have been dealt a blow after the government revealed it would not be supporting a community-backed design for the redevelopment of Euston station. Patrick McLoughlin, the secretary of state for transport, said his department’s openess to consider a new station design known as ‘Double Deck Down 2’ (DDD2) would end after receiving advice from Network Rail that claimed the proposals were “not viable”. The decision makes a much…
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