Tuesday, 23 July 2013

Vince Cable: Case For HS2 Still To Be Made

The case for the High Speed Rail train link between London, Birmingham and the north of England has yet to be made, according to Vince Cable.

And senior Tory Archie Norman expresses his "astonishment" about the Government’s cost-benefit analysis and concludes that "HS2 is not just a bad piece of accounting. It is a failure of imagination: surely we can think of something better to do with £50bn?"

Boris Johnson has weighed in to the debate with his view that “This thing isn’t going to cost £42 billion, my friends. The real cost is going to be way north of that (keep going till you reach £70 billion, and then keep going).”

So whether the final cost is estimated to be £42billion, £50billion or more than £70billion, this farce must be stopped now. If the project is to increase capacity, then bring in double-deck carriages; if it is meant about saving time, spending billions to save minutes doesn't add up as a good use of public money - and with ever increasing sophistication (and falling costs) of portable personal communications - we should cut our losses and spend the money on the most "shovel ready" projects available: increasing affordable housing.

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