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Price of HS2 rises to £42.6bn – Alexander

HS2 will have £10bn additional funding, chief secretary to the Treasury Danny Alexander has announced. The funding envelope will be set at £42.6bn for construction costs and £7.5bn for rolling stock.

Network Rail is to conduct a feasibility study into electrifying the Lakes line between Oxenholme and Windermere, and from 2015 will start electrifying between Gospel Oak and Barking.

£2m will support a funding and financing study into Crossrail 2, he added.

Alexander said today: “We are learning from our Olympic experience – setting a long term, realistic financial plan with the right contingencies. This is the longest and largest transport budget the Treasury has ever set aside, and the people running the project will have to deliver within it.

“This Mr Speaker, is a project that will change the economic geography of our country, and I urge Honourable Members to support it. It is not being built at the expense of a single other rail project.”

Alison Munro, HS2 Ltd chief executive: “We look forward to working with the HS2 Growth Task Force led by Lord Deighton to maximise the opportunities for payback from this significant investment that will be a catalyst for a High Speed Britain.

“The target we have been set is consistent with our Baseline 3 estimate produced in May and upon which DfT spending review bid was made. The scope of which is the same as the current round of consultation.

“With the second reading of the Paving Bill and the indicative funding allocation made to DfT by the Chancellor for the period to 2021 we can now move forward with certainty towards the deposit of the Hybrid Bill in December this year and firm up the procurement strategy that forms part of our plan to deliver the efficiency savings that underpin the Target we have been set.

“We have managed the scope for Phase 1 to arrive at a reference design that meets the objectives set by DfT for HS2 and have done so broadly within the cost and contingency envelope of £16.3bn set out by the previous Secretary of State in Jan 2012. My team will continue to be focused on control of costs.”

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Ricp   30/06/2013 at 16:16

Could this be the killer blow? Too many realists are beginning to think this is the wrong scheme in the wrong place. I would suggest an urgent aerial study of the old GC route which Watkin got right and Beeching and Castle et al got wrong.

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