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Amanda’s kinky proclivity

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Amanda White, HS2 Ltd

Amanda White, HS2 Ltd

HS2 western leg planning process (candid and unofficial)HS2 senior route engineer Amanda White was one of the speakers at the 18 March 2014 ‘High Speed Rail Vision into Reality’ Manchester event organised by the IET, HS2 Ltd, and Parsons Brinckerhoff. In her presentation, Ms White set out to justify the kinky and infamous route chosen for the western leg of the Y network to Manchester.

She explained that the design objective was to minimise the route mileage of network built, whilst ‘serving as many places as possible’. But clearly, the Consultation Route western leg is a poor match for those objectives. The HS2 route from Manchester to London is not really any shorter than the Victorian route via Stoke-on-Trent (despite not having to serve any places inbetween).

As implicitly admitted by Ms White, a Manchester airport station was in essence mandated from the outset, regardless of its meagre socio-economic value. It is also likely that “stakeholder issues” were pivotal in bending the line into Crewe, and around the heart of the Tatton constituency. There can be no cost-benefit explanation for the Golborne link, which would only carry a handful of trains. Together, the Golborne link, Tatton kink and Waterman hub must add somewhere north of £2 billion to the HS2 budget.

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Written by beleben

March 25, 2014 at 10:52 pm

Posted in High speed rail, HS2

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