HS2 and West Coast passenger capacity
On 29 April 2014, Robert Goodwill MP ‘answered’ the question ‘What is the percentage increase in capacity on the West Coast Main Line from HS2’, by not answering the question.
As can be seen from HS2 director Andrew McNaughton’s February 2015 diagram (below), HS2 would not allow any more trains to run on the West Coast Main Line. And in HS2 Ltd’s vision, West Coast intercity and commuter trains would have pretty much the same maximum capacity as they do now.
Furthermore, the HS2 project entails reducing West Coast Main Line tracks into, and platforms at, Euston. How that is compatible with ‘increasing West Coast capacity’, has never been explained.
According to Prof McNaughton’s slides, WCML combined train paths would increase from 23 to 23, making the percentage increase 0%.