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Birmingham - London, 'New rail link under consideration'

7569 Views 56 Replies 15 Participants Last post by  Salif
This sounds good! I just hope they connect it through London - Stratford International and not London - St. Pancras to make through trains Birmingham - Paris possible.
Double-decker trains, to cut journeys between London and Birmingham to 45 minutes, are being considered.

A link is suggested with Eurostar, bypassing central London

The Department for Transport is looking at plans for a new 190mph (305km/h) link from near the new Channel Tunnel terminus in London to the Midlands. Costing £15bn, the link would enable Midlands travellers to reach Paris in three hours, bypassing central London.

The BBC's Midlands Transport Correspondent, Peter Plisner, said raising the money would not be easy. He said the initial cost would inevitably escalate to billions of pounds more.

Heathrow tunnel

He added: "After initial disappointment when Eurostar was launched that Midlanders could not go direct to the continent on the train, this plan could finally allow this to happen."

The line would have the opportunity to extend at each end - to Heathrow, via a five-mile tunnel, and to Manchester.

The plan was first envisaged by Greengauge 21, a group of rail industry leaders, and is being looked at in Whitehall. It is estimated the new line would take at least 15 years to complete.

A spokesperson for the Department for Transport confirmed the scheme was among those being considered but added that £8bn was being spent on the west coast main line upgrade, which would be completed next year. "That will set the standard on that line to 2020," he said.

"We are not ruling out any projects at present, but we will be making a major announcement about the future of railway services next month," he said. "Until then we cannot comment any further."
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There would be no connectivity to HS1 and on to Europe :bash:
If you're spending those sort of sums, I would of thought maglev would be a much better option.
The Greenguage 21 report is a little vague about capacity but when they list specific sefvices we find "St Pancras (Euston)" in the text. They also call out Euston as an alternative destination in London.

My biggest concern is that they have fallen into the Birmigham International trap to avoid longer tunnels. This will force hugh crowds onto the trains from New Street to International to catch through trains from the north.
Would be interested to know how they'd intend to fit more trains into St Pancras which has a relatively low number of platforms. Perhaps a new station under Kings Cross as was once suggested?
This is exactly what most of the forumers from the "Heartland" have been objecting too for the last ten or more years. They were promised through connections when the Channel Tunnel was approved.

Just because you want to play with innovative and speculative technology, does not permit you to deny the "Heartlanders their right to a through connection to Europe
The UK Ultraspeed plan is to have a station at Stratford or the Thames Gateway if i'm not mistaken. So simply a case of changing from 1 to the other when you get there.
Look at the source of the propsal. :bash:

Greengauge 21 is supported by the railway industry where Ultraspeed is a marketing group for MagLev :eek:hno: :) :eek:hno: :) :eek:hno:

By the SNP is busily cutting back on transportation projects!
The Glasgow forumers are getting more and more excited about a Glasgow-Edinburgh maglev, irrespective of the plans further south. This is mostly based on increasingly positive noises from the Scottish Executive. Given the cost of the proposed line to Birmingham, I really don't understand why that isn't emerging as the preferred option here.
Probably but the only data available does not really represent construction in the Western European regulatory environment so the proponents of MagLev are using cost data that is rather speculative at best. As we have no real actual costs to use for comparison it is very hard evaluate their estimates.
Wouldn't that Maglev price be grossly underestimated? How could a much longer line possibly be that much cheaper, relatively? While in the Netherlands, for example, there were plans for a new line between Groningen and Amsterdam, and the conventional high speed line was estimated as much, much cheaper than the Maglev option there.
Of course not! Greengauge 21 is an advocacy group and this report is not sponsored by any government organization.
Hopefully the report will have examined all options so we can see why they are going ahead with this option as opposed to maglev. The most important thing is that the government is finally getting round to dealing with our rail infrastructure and connecting the UK's biggest cities with a decent fast line. This is what matters. I do not think they are being ambitous enough though.
It is not impossible, but it will involve removing a significant number of building which will be very unpopular!! :bash:
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