Paul Blomfield – 2016 Parliamentary Question to the Department for Transport

The below Parliamentary question was asked by Paul Blomfield on 2016-02-11.

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what his policy is on ensuring that High Speed 2 stations should be located where they can deliver maximum impact on public investment.

Mr Robert Goodwill

Analysis of the Sheffield City Region station options was published in the ‘Engineering options report; West Midlands to Leeds’ dated March 2012. This included analysis of several station sites around the city centre.

The current estimated difference in cost between locating a High Speed station at Victoria and Meadowhall is £680m. Previous work on the cost of options at Victoria and other city centre sites are not comparable to the current estimate given above. With regards to the Meadowhall station, following the 2013 public consultation, no significant changes have been made to the original station design therefore there have not been any changes in cost.

When recommending a station location HS2 Ltd. uses a number of criteria, including;

  1. engineering and construction feasibility;
  2. sustainability;
  3. demand considerations, including journey times;
  4. cost; and
  5. wider impacts

Potential options were sifted by HS2 Ltd. according to these criteria. To support and challenge this approach, external stakeholders and advisors from the Department’s Project Representative Team were involved in reviewing the process and outcomes where appropriate. Further information about the appraisal process can be found in the 2012 ‘Options for phase two of the high speed rail network’ report and 2013 ‘Appraisal of Sustainability’ report. Both of these documents are available on the government website.

Analysis undertaken by HS2 shows that the introduction of the Sheffield Meadowhall HS2 station could support up to 5,400 jobs and up to 300 residential units, while a HS2 station at Victoria could support an estimated 9,000 jobs and 900 housing units.

Finally, I can confirm that Department for Transport officials have received a copy of Sheffield City Region’s study into connectivity for a city centre High Speed 2 station at Victoria which Network Rail was involved in.