High speed 2 easily cleared its first parliamentary hurdle yesterday, with just 34 MPs voting against the High Speed Rail (Preparation) Bill – 350 voted in favour. Here Penny Gaines argues the case against HS2 is still strong.
High Speed 2 will cost £50bn, including the trains. But it is an environmentally damaging vanity project, with a constantly shifting rationale for building it.
The current argument is that speed is irrelevant for the case for HS2, but that our existing railways are nearly full and the only option is to build a new high speed railway. This argument does not stand up to scrutiny.