New-build versus “Victorian infrastructure”
One of the arguments for new-build HS2 is the so-called “step change in capacity” it would provide compared to “Victorian infrastructure”.
But as can be seen from Figure 1.2 of the Government Response to the House of Lords Economic Affairs Committee report, path capacity on the “Victorian” West Coast fast lines exceeds that of new build high speed lines, such as the 1980s Paris Lyon LGV.
Clearly, “Victorian infrastructure” can be resignalled to provide similar headways to new-build lines.
So, one of the numerous options for increasing capacity on the West Coast corridor would be to resignal the southern part of the route. A 150-second-headway (which would not require moving block) could provide at least 18 fast paths per hour.