Yesterday, HS2 announced they were making some very minor changes to the alignment of Route 3, the government’s preferred route.
This does not change Stop HS2’s view of the proposed new rail link.
Like HS2 say in their document “the overall business case for HS2 will be unaffected”. That’s because tinkering with the route will not suddenly make thousands more people decide they need to go to London – but the HS2 business case relies on a massive increase in passenger numbers.
The overall environmental case is not improved. Building the proposed new rail link will still cause massive carbon emissions. Minor changes to the route will still mean that high speed trains use twice as much energy as conventional fast trains. And minor changes to the proposed route will have no effect on the numbers of flights between Birmingham and London: because there are no flights between Birmingham and London.
In addition, without seeing the maps – which won’t be published for two or three weeks – nobody knows exactly how they will be affected by the changes.
(Here’s one blogger’s take on the changes: “the HS2 route switch con“.)