Population increases and economic changes are meaning more travel, particularly to cities and town centres. Rail travel between Birmingham and London is predicted to more than double in 20 years.
Our transport system is becoming full, needing expansion of public transport, particularly railways, to help avoid more road congestion with its costs and environmental impacts.
Expanding existing railways is helping, but in the long term this will not be enough, will not be value for money, and will cause delays and disruption.
The HS2 rail line will provide significant extra capacity for passengers and freight within the UK and to continental Europe, along with other significant predicted national and local economic benefits that will come from sharing some of the South East’s wealth.
Independent research carried out in 2013 predicts with a fully operational HS2, along with the right local transport improvements, the West Midlands could see:
- 50,000 additional jobs (26,000 of which would be in Birmingham/Solihull).
- An average GVA increase of £680 per worker.
- A £4 billion increase in economic output per year.