The Financial Times reports that “Second Crossrail line seen as vital for HS2”.
Mike Brown, managing director of the Tube, said that without extra rail capacity within the capital, the terminus for the so-called High Speed 2 line at London’s Euston station would “fall apart” because of the volume of passengers.
Transport for London forecasts that passenger arrivals at Euston in the three-hour morning peak would jump from 23,500 in 2009 to 57,000 in 2033 when HS2 is due to be fully open.
It should come as no surprise to the Department for Transport that Euston could not cope with the number of passengers being forecast by HS2 Ltd. This was noted by the London Assembly’s response to the 2011 national consultation on HS2.
We also share with local groups, other elected representatives and transport providers concerns over the dispersal of thousands of extra HS2 passengers during the morning rush hour, particularly when the full Y network is in operation. This will particularly affect the Victoria and Northern tube lines, which already experience severe over-crowding. Additional tube capacity, in the form of a new line linking Chelsea and Hackney (‘Crossrail 2’) should be constructed during Phase 1 of the scheme to ensure that local transport services are not swamped by the new passengers created by HS2. This would help unlock the bottleneck at Euston and ensure that faster inter-city journeys are not wasted due to delays in accessing transport in central London.
(You can still download the Stop HS2 2011 submission to the London Assembley’s Examination into HS2.)
It’s clear that the need for Crossrail 2 is separate from HS2 – after all the current safeguarded Crossrail 2 route has been in force since June 2008 (replacing an earlier 1991 safeguarded route). However it highlights an issue which will come up around all the other stations on the HS2 route: the need to build more transport infrastructure to enable people to get to and from the stations to use the HS2 trains, if the plans go ahead. This has not been included as part of the headline £33 billion cost of HS2 Phases 1 and 2.