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Justified and ancient

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The Economist magazine, Jan 2017

The Economist magazine, Jan 2017

The OECD, a rich-country think-tank, reckons it costs 90% more to build lines for trains that reach 350kph than it does to lay ones that allow speeds of 250kph, according to The Economist.

[China has built the world’s largest bullet-train network, the Economist, 14 Jan 2017]

For longer lines with more than 100m passengers a year and travel times of five hours or less — such as the one between Beijing and Shanghai — the more expensive type may be justifiable.

So how many rail passengers are there to ‘justify’ a 350 km/h HS2 link between London and Leeds, for example?

Written by beleben

January 18, 2017 at 3:47 pm

Posted in HS2

One Response

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  1. The OECD estimate of increased cost of a high speed line of 90% to go from 250kph to 350kph is far more plausible than HS2’s ludicrous claim of 9% to go from 200kph to 400kph which has never been justified.

    Leeds demand flows

    Options for phase 2 of the high speed rail network – demand and appraisal report MVA

    Table 8.1 2010/11 Weekday rail trips to and from Leeds (Two-way)
    London 4700
    Birmingham 400

    4700 x 365 = 1.7 million per year

    32 trains Leeds – Kings Cross today . No direct trains to Euston.
    Assume it’s increased to 5000 trips in both directions, so 2500 in one direction on 32 trains
    Average loading 78.

    Table 8.2 2043 weekday rail trips to and from Leeds (Two-way)
    Forecast for 2043 without HS2
    London 9200
    Birmingham 700

    9200 x 365 = 3.36 million per year


    2008 East Coast Mainline Rail Utilisation Strategy

    Figure 3 – LDHS passenger journeys per weekday from 2006 PLANET model
    11,100 total in both directions between Leeds and Wakefield.
    It is likely that a substantial proportion of the 11,100 will be Leeds – Wakefield journeys and not all the rest will go all the way to London. This provides some support for the MVA figures.

    Unfortunately the 2016 RUS update does not provide more recent figures.

    However you work it out it is nowhere near 100 million!


    January 19, 2017 at 12:00 pm

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