How would HS2 ‘improve links between the north’s major cities’?
Transport for the North must become “the client and guiding mind for HS2 in the north of England”, according to Greengauge 21 (Jim Steer).
[High Speed in the North of England, Greengauge 21, 1 November, 2016]
The HS2 project is now recognised as having multiple functions, including improving links between the north’s major cities, as well as to/from London. Decisions about how and when to implement HS2 in the north, including developing service plans and providing for access to HS2 stations, must be recognised as a core part of Transport for the North’s transport strategy.
“Improving links between the north’s major cities”?
As can be seen in the diagram from the October 2016 ‘Taking root’ report (above), the HS2 ‘M18 route’ provides no connection between Leeds and Sheffield. The first stop south of Leeds would either be a parkway somewhere east of Rotherham, or a parkway somewhere west of Nottingham. There would be no city stop anywhere on the entire HS2 journey between Leeds and London.
On the western leg, plans for a Crewe ‘hub station with 360-degree connectivity’ seem to have hit the buffers. The ‘Taking root’ report showed the Crewe HS2 stop as having no more status than Sheffield Midland station. HS2’s first stop south of Manchester would be the parkway west of Ringway airport, and there would be no city stop anywhere on the entire HS2 journey between Manchester and London.
So much for HS2 “improving links between the north’s major cities”.