The Government has said that it may scrap HS2 despite over £7 billion having already been spent on the new high-speed rail line. Grant Shapps, the Secretary of State for Transport, said that the project would be reviewed and a decision made on whether it would continue.
Shapps said in an interview:
“We are launching the review as we genuinely want to know what it would cost to complete this project. Then we will know and we will be in a much better position to make the decision to go or no go by the end of the year.”
Lord Adonis, the former Transport Secretary, who has called for increased spending on the rail infrastructure, posted on Twitter:
“HS2 review is about as stupid as you can get & screws Birmingham & the North. Classic Johnson. It throws project into flux & will cause big delays, loss of confidence & cost increases. But HS2 will almost certainly continue afterwards in modified form. What a shambles.
Membership of the review is about evenly divided between supporters & opponents of HS2, who will now engage in a massive bun fight while the Transport Department runs for cover & HS2 Ltd is paralysed by indecision.
Designing an infrastructure project by committee is always bad, but redesigning by committee of contrarians is reckless & irresponsible. This is Cummings-style Maoist mayhem to appease a handful of Tory backbenchers.
So much for Johnson’s commitment to infrastructure and the North! The first thing he does is to delay and possibly undermine the first strategic investment in the north in decades.”