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World class severance

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Birmingham city council has launched a consultation on its new ‘Curzon HS2 Masterplan’ for the area around the proposed high speed rail terminus around Moor Street. The HS2 station is referred to as “Curzon”, rather than “Curzon Street”.

As can be seen from the visualisations, the Masterplan combines a sort of bubblewrap-gone-wrong high speed station, with extensive urban redevelopment.

Birmingham Curzon HS2 Masterplan, artist's impression, 27 Feb 2014

Birmingham Curzon HS2 Masterplan, artist’s impression, 27 Feb 2014

[Express and Star, ‘Dramatic images show new Birmingham HS2 station’, 27 Feb 2014]

Sir Albert Bore, leader of Birmingham City Council said: “Today we set out our vision for how Birmingham can use HS2 as a catalyst to transform a huge part of our city, bringing with it jobs and prosperity for people in the West Midlands.

“We’re not waiting around for HS2 to get built before we get started. We’re announcing our plans today, and we’re ready to start building as soon as the new railway gets the green light.

Birmingham Curzon HS2 Masterplan, artist's impression, 27 Feb 2014

Birmingham Curzon HS2 Masterplan, artist’s impression, 27 Feb 2014

Waheed Nazir, the council’s director for planning and regeneration, said “The potential of HS2 can only be realised if we build a world class station that seamlessly connects people to the rest of the city centre.” But from the Masterplan visualisation, it looks as if the planners have been unable to solve the problem of how to ‘seamlessly connect’ Curzon and New Street stations.

The visualisations also show

  • Midland Metro trams running to the HS2 station,
  • Moor Street as being more or less pedestrianised, and
  • new passageways over the existing rail tracks into Birmingham New Street.

Clearly the costs, and disruption, involved in realising the Masterplan would be enormous. The disruption to travellers using the existing bus and rail services into Birmingham city centre would be much higher than previously recorded.

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Written by beleben

February 27, 2014 at 8:14 am

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