Despite HS2 coming under fire in the last few weeks, local government leaders from the North have said that scrapping the project would be a disaster. They also claimed that it would affect the prosperity of Britain for decades.
The council leaders sent a letter to the Treasury Chief secretary Liz Truss, claiming that the £56bn project is already having a positive impact on jobs and investment in the north. The letter delves into the problems that the transport network faces although it has made it clear that deciding not to go ahead with HS2 would only lead to a backwards step for the country.
Following a damning report from the Lords committee, the letter states that collectively, all regions in the area could create up to 500,000 jobs while also helping to inject millions into the economy.
We are now at a point where the UK should consider to continue with building the largest infrastructure project in Europe. If a lack of commitment is made to HS2 then it would lead to the demise of regional economies while preventing the UK from prospering over the next few decades. The letter claims that it is vital that the Spending Review should avoid making false links between investment in local, regional and national transport infrastructure which comes at a time when speculation suggests that the HS2 project could be scrapped altogether.
Representatives from local authorities in Birmingham, Manchester, Leeds, Liverpool, Newcastle, Sheffield, North Yorkshire, Sunderland, Durham and Lancashire have signed the letter including mayors and business leaders.
The rising costs have put HS2 under a lot of pressure, all of which has stemmed from the increases land acquisition costs while it has also been announced that the project could run using few trains or even slower trains.
1t was just last week that the Economic Affairs Committee published a report whereby the HS2 should be reconsidered as it will no offer value for money and comes at a risk of putting the north at a disadvantage. However, policymakers have been urged to put the benefits of the project first with the business case for HS2 being noticeably clear.