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21/08/2019

Future Of HS2 Project To Be Decided

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The future of the HS2 project is set to be decided in the coming months through a detailed review.

The review will be carried out to decide whether and how HS2 should proceed, taking into account its benefits and impacts; affordability and efficiency; deliverability and scope; and its phasing, including its relationship with Northern Powerhouse Rail.

Experienced industry professional Douglas Oakervee, who has worked on a wide range of major projects over the course of his 60 year career, will lead the review and will work with Lord Berkeley as his deputy.

They will be supported by a panel of experts, bringing together a range of perspectives from business, academia and the transport sector to ensure an independent, thorough and objective assessment of the project. Panellists will each be consulted on the report's conclusions.

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Publishing the timetable for the discussions today, 21 August, Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said: "The Prime Minister has been clear that transport infrastructure has the potential to drive economic growth, redistribute opportunity and support towns and cities across the UK, but that investments must be subject to continuous assessment of their costs and benefits.

"That's why we are undertaking this independent and rigorous review of HS2.

"Douglas Oakervee and his expert panel will consider all the evidence available, and provide the department with clear advice on the future of the project."

A final report will be sent to the Secretary of State, with oversight from the Prime Minister and Chancellor of the Exchequer, by the autumn. The report will inform the government's decisions on next steps for the project.

Limited, largely preparatory works, on the project will continue in parallel with the report's work.

(CM/MH)

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