Building HS2 ‘without compromise’
In an interview with the Architects’ Journal (paywall), High Speed 2 Ltd executive chairman and former Network Rail kamikaze David Higgins spoke about the challenges of bringing HS2 to Euston and building ‘without compromise’. As is now expected from Mr Higgins, there was a large baloney coefficient.
[David Higgins: ‘HS2 can’t be another compromise’, Tim Clark, 13 July, 2015]
[AJ:] With regards to disruption, there are reports that [Euston HS2] will take to 2046. How are you going to deal with that?
[DH:] It’s not going to take until 2046, but there is going to be a trade off at some point between disruption and time.
[DH:] I remember French engineers visiting Crossrail at Farringdon, and they said: ‘Why are you so patiently looking to maintain the whole station and keep this open?
‘What we would do is build a new station over there, shut this, knock it down and relocate. We wouldn’t go through this tedious aggressive incremental process.’
The closest French equivalent of Farringdon would doubtless have been the rebuild of Chatelet, as part of the cross-Paris railway built to join lines 16 and 17 (now RER A). ‘The French’ kept the station where it was, and went through a tedious aggressive incremental process of digging big holes in the ground. Just like Crossrail.