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23.10.13

Need to plan ahead for HS2 – Growth Taskforce

The UK must get prepared for HS2 to maximise the benefit for the country, the Government’s Growth Taskforce has urged. 

Publishing its initial report on the project, the taskforce calls for local areas to plan ahead, and secure wider investment for better regional transport links. 

The taskforce is meeting with city leaders and businesses to inform its work. It will provide recommendations in its final report next year. 

Commercial secretary and HS2 Growth Taskforce chair Lord Deighton said: “HS2 is set to be the biggest construction project in Europe and it’s vital we harness the huge potential that it offers the UK. It’s not just a transport project and it’s not just for one central government department to deliver in isolation. 

“In our report next year, the Taskforce will challenge Whitehall and local government leaders to step up and play their part in this transformative scheme. Growth and regeneration won’t just be handed to us on a plate – we need to think big, we need to plan ahead and most importantly we need to work together if we are to really make the most of this once in a generation opportunity.” 

Transport secretary Patrick McLoughlin said: “With more than 95% of Crossrail’s budget to date being spent in the UK, I am determined that HS2 will replicate and build on this success for British businesses. 

“It is a challenging project and as I have said many times before the easy thing would be to do nothing. But this government is committed to HS2 because it is vital to Britain’s future. I look forward to receiving the final report and recommendations from the taskforce early next year.” 

Tell us what you think – have your say below, or email us directly at opinion@railtechnologymagazine.com 

Image c. Peter Eastern

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