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Topic Title: E&T magazine - Debate - HS2, the need for speed
Topic Summary: HS2, the need for speed
Created On: 17 April 2013 10:54 AM
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 17 April 2013 10:54 AM
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jpwilson

Posts: 59
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For:
HS2 is good for the national economy and will create jobs in the engineering and technology sector.

Against:
HS2 won't solve Britain's commuter problems and the money should be invested in digital infrastructure.

The argument for:
Good infrastructure is essential to the success of a competitive modern economy. That's why countries around the world are investing in high-speed rail - helping businesses by bringing cities closer together. More and more people in Britain are travelling by train, and demand continues to climb. Unless we invest and plan for the future, our rail network risks becoming a brake on economic growth. That is why we are planning a high-speed rail network that will link eight of Britain's ten biggest cities. High Speed Two is a once-in-a-generation opportunity to invest in Britain's future by making space for people and freight on our increasingly crowded railways.

The argument against:
HS2 is the highly controversial proposed high-speed rail link between London, Birmingham, Manchester and Leeds. The first trains between London and Birmingham won't carry passengers until 2026 and the second phase from Birmingham northwards is due for completion in 2033. It's a government project, meaning the taxpayer will pay the cost of construction, but the benefits are uncertain. The HS2 tracks are estimated to cost £33bn and a further £8bn for the trains. Stop HS2 thinks that HS2 is a bad project in its own right. But there are also much better ways of achieving the same goals.

***************************************************************************

In the latest issue of E&T magazine, we also have an interview with HS2 chief engineer Professor Andrew McNaughton.

Railway enthusiasts might also enjoy Christian Wolmar's article on the effects of Richard Beeching's seismic report on Britain's railway system, 50 years later.

Edited: 18 April 2013 at 11:13 AM by jpwilson
 17 April 2013 01:34 PM
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padav

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Readers here should be aware that this article is linked directly from the STOPHS2 site - hardly likely to lead to unbiased comments here?

The article's introduction of the two protagonists also failed to mention that Penny Gaines lives in Quainton, within a stones throw of the approve route3 phase 1 pathway of HS2 - this might begin to explain her visceral hostility to the project? The project is "highly controversial" only because a relatively tiny community of very vocal campaigners have succeeded in hijacking serious debate, driven by very obvious reasons of naked self-interest - the new line is planned to come very close to them?

Penny Gaines alludes to some kind of virtual reality future world in which demand for travel will be significantly constrained - this vision forms the bedrock of her seemingly reasonable opposition to HS2 - is this potential future founded upon our experience - far from it - in fact during a period when connectivity has improved out of all recognition (something we take for granted?), demand for rail travel has concurrently soared, displaying relentless year on year growth, even in the teeth of an economic gale that might reasonably have been expected to diminish economic activity driven demand. If the notion of super fast broadband for everyone and its consequent dampening effect upon travel is correct, we only need to look to South Koream, which has sat at the top of the connectivity world league for the last decade at least - are South Koreans reducing their demand for rail travel - far from it - in fact South Korea is a leading proponent of High Speed Rail, investing heavily in this 21st century travel technology.

Penny Gaines also plays games with statistics, claiming that Inter-city trains are far from full - what she conveniently omits is the fact that this figure relates to peak time Virgin inter city trains only - non peak time Virgin trains are running at plus 80% loadings (a figure increasing year on year) and London Mainline trains operating out of Euston are currently at 90% plus loadings (also increasing relentlessly)

In conclusion it seems that Penny Gaines is propagating a toxic blend of selectively edited facts, manipulated figures, half-truths and downright porkies in a blatant attempt to mislead readers - not really the best way to achieve a rational decision based on factual information?
 17 April 2013 02:00 PM
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6X

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HS2 may well create jobs in the engineering and technology sector but would not be good for the economy. Taking 60 years to deliver around £2 of benefits for every £1 spent is not a good deal. The effective return is just over 1% per annum. With interest rates on government debt at over 2%, HS2 looks like economic madness. Prudent economics would dictate that capital is deployed towards the maximisation of return and social utility. Even if HS2 does deliver benefits the opportunity costs are high and it is unlikely that this is the best way for the government to spend money.
 17 April 2013 02:12 PM
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jarathoon

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There is a Lecture by Professor Andrew McNaughton, Chief Engineer, High Speed 2 Ltd in Welwyn Garden City on Thursdsay 18th April

"High Speed 2 - Joint event with ICE"

http://www.theiet.org/events/l...2199.cfm?nxtId=175009

Although I was an enthusiastic supporter initially, my support is sagging slightly. I can't help thinking that costs have balloned unnecessarily and I haven't seen evidence of the right sort of engagement with wider society to find creative ways of reducing them.

Did we really need to choose a route requiring quite so many tunnels? Do we really need a new tunnel into central london?

However I don't buy the view that wealth in the uk can be distributed more evenly around the country based solely on better broadband links. Upgraded transport links are vital too, especially if petrol prices continue to soar.

Hopefully Professor Andrew McNaughton will convince me and others tomorrow that he and his team have done all they could reasonably have done to keep the projected costs of the project under control. I suppose it is his job in part to make people like me enthusiastic supporters again.

James Arathoon

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James Arathoon
 17 April 2013 05:53 PM
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richardgrosse

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Never been clear about why politicians think this is a good idea when the figures simply don't add up. There are much better schemes on the table than HS2 which could be delivered quicker, and at higher cost/benefit ratios, yet they continue to steamroller this in like people-possessed - more clarity is needed on their reasoning behind this than the empty rhetoric thats currently being spouted. Also some rather worrying details have emerged on the HS2 Ltd PR machine's approach to dealing with some quite legitimate concerns around the environment and compensation schemes - simply bad mouthing and stereotyping people is a wholly unacceptable way of convincing business and the public that this scheme has any valid legs. More pressing than linking cities north and south, by higher speeds than any other lines in the world, might be opening up old trunk lines offering commuters greater choice and easing pressure on existing lines. Also concentrating efforts on improving competition and efficiency on the popular commuter lines to bring rail operators off the gravy train of ever increasing fares. I'm not even going to mention our crumbling roads... I think most business people and train users realise that HS2 isn't best use of funds, so who's going to talk some sense into our dear leaders?
 19 April 2013 05:37 PM
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ctolmie

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Good discussion. I am not sure the answer is as clear. Forgetting congestion for a moment, let's consider speed of transport between locations as an argument for reducing North/South divide (which we need to do). If time between locations was a major factor, Tower Hamlets would be much better off than it is. People in Tower Hamlets are only 10 minutes from the financial heart of London, yet poverty there is among the highest on the island.
I have an issue with the design of HS2. First, I believe it should be part of a network. Interconnection with HS1 via 30 MPH North London commuter and freight route is not sensible.
Secondly, it would be great if it went near the centre of London. Euston is just off the edge of London's vast Central Business District. Reaching the commercial heart of London from Euston is difficult. It is also 15 stops on Crossrail from Old Oak Common.
Thirdly, it lack's vision. Our population continues to grow (for various reasons) and we need a new town. This could have been planned as part of the design for and vision for HS2.
Finally, its first route should have been North, up the East Coast. The reason - that is the part of the island that will benefit from adjacency with the rest of the EU and to immediately connect with another Capital City (Edinburgh).
 21 April 2013 01:34 PM
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jarathoon

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From the Professor Andrew McNaughton talk on Thursday in Welwyn Garden City (which was very well attended) I learnt the following:

1. Professor Andrew McNaughton is a very nice person and interesting speaker, and spoke honestly giving his own perspective in part.

2. A lot of the information he presented was not relevant to the UK. We need to start with the UK's problems, reallyu focus on them and then try to solve them in a long term and cost effective manner.

3. As Professor Andrew McNaughton himself admits he is a terrible systems engineer (and I agree he really is). This is going to potentially lead to vast amounts of money being spent in the wrong way.

I have serious concerns about the Current HS2 project, especially in taking vast numbers of extra people into Euston. I didn't understand the purpose of the Old Oak Common station other than if there was a problem at Euston people could be dumped there instead. What a nonsense!

Here are some of my observations:

1. If we are going to spend all this money we need to at least end up with at least one North-South line that can transport drive-on lorries overnight and into the early morning. This is because if petrol and diesel prices soar in the future before we have alternative fuels, the North of the country could suffer badly in terms of transporting it goods and services into London, that is in competition with goods coming in from the continent via the channel tunnel.

2. I think we need to try to avoid putting another tunnel under London. I would try at all costs to keep the lines above ground and engineer at least two major station destinations, say Euston and Paddington. Maybe even three major station destinations in London, perhaps adding Stratford if possible. If necessary double deck train lines should be built.

3. We need a dedicated car park stop on the M25. The nonsense of Ebbsfleet on was created by non-systems thinking trying to create demand where none previously existed, a M25 station would not be the same.

4. I would look at the feasibility of building a driverless light railway next to the Chiltern line and then completely ripping up the existing Chiltern line to put in HS2.

I would have 4 HS2 stops between Birmingham and London, with premium Pullman services not stopping at any of them, other cheaper trains just stopping at one or two. Given the frequency of service anticipated there might be no need to have any all stopping trains.

Intermediate Stops
M25 Car park stop (Perhaps even destination stop for some trains)
High Wycombe
Bicester (to serve Oxford and Banbury, perhaps even Milton Keynes)
Warrick or Leamington Spa

With automated control it will be possible to weave trains back onto the mainline without slowing the fastest Pullman services.

This might not be fast as the current HS2 proposed and trains may have to slow slightly when going through the conurbations, but we start building a railway that is much more flexible and can achieve a lot more goals than the current proposals (and perhaps slightly less public opposition)

My recommendation is that the current HS2 plans be abandoned, Professor Andrew McNaughton be replaced quickly and something better and more cost-effective proposed.

The current HS2 project is heading into the mud and it is difficult to see how it can be rescued from an engineering perspective, let alone a political perspective.

James Arathoon

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James Arathoon
 22 April 2013 01:30 AM
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jarathoon

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Can we really redevelop the Chiltern line for HS2 and add a driverless light railway next to it? With driverless links to Oxford, Banbury and Stratford-upon-Avon perhaps.

In doing this we will end up redeveloping a line that is predominantly not electrified yet. At some time in the near future the Chiltern line would have to be electrified with driverless trains anyway, so all I am proposing is that we do it sooner in a different way.

Birmingham Moor Street can be redeveloped for HS2 + the light commuter traffic, with an over -ground or underground travelator connection to Birmingham New Street.

There is space to expand Birmingham Moor Street on the North Eastern Edge, as its built out over the New street railway lines anyway. Some car park space will be lost, so multi-storey car park further up perhaps.

Some line straightening needs to take place on the Chiltern line and Banbury can be completely bypassed by putting HS2 along side the M40 there. New Bridges and I think one short tunnel.

Its quite easy to bypass Leamington Spa and Warrick if needed, on the route of the M40 as limited space and strong curve through Leamington Spa, might make route that way inadvisable. That means shared station outside which both towns can share, via driverless light railway perhaps.

Look do we really want to spend £33 billion (early phases) + £8 billion (not sure?) for trains, without thinking properly what we could do if we spent the money in a slightly different way.

Chiltern Railways mostly sends trains into London Marylebone at the moment; I wonder if things can be re-gigged around a bit to get HS2 into London Paddington. Can we move some commuter traffic out of Paddington into the new old oak common station, instead of landing HS2 passengers there?

Can we connect into Euston for a proportion of trains via a new curved interconnection near Wembley. Who knows? Who in government cares if HS2 can be done in a better and cheaper way?

Apparently drive-on trucks can't go via the new HS2. Who says? Professor Andrew McNaughton wants to spend extra to make it a high quality line, that needs less maintenance. What is the purpose of this?, can it have more than one purpose?

Could we transport drive-on goods trucks in ways that don't stop maintenance on HS2? Perhaps not? Should then make the driverless light railway capable of taking goods trains as well? Who knows?

I have been told moving containerised goods on the east and west coast main lines will be enough.

Well I think there is a strong chance it won't be?

Who will benefit if large numbers of lorries can be moved of the M40, as part of the HS2 project? Some of the same people complaining about the existing plans, perhaps?

Look I could be talking nonsense here. I could be asking all the wrong questions, and thinking in all the wrong ways. However I would have liked to see some independent evidence that the HS2 team aren't talking nonsense and aren't about to waste shed loads of money drilling and maintaining unnecessary holes in the ground for no good reason.

James Arathoon

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James Arathoon
 23 April 2013 09:59 AM
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jarathoon

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Some other observations:

1. By putting a station at Bicester, I am implicitly anticipating that it will grow to the size of Oxford over the next 30 years. i.e. 35,000 people to between 150,000 and 200,000 people. Therefore with Oxford this would eventually give 300,000 to 350,000 people in close proximity to the station.

2. The train link to Milton Keynes (and Aylesbury) would need to rebuilt and the train link to Oxford upgraded to a much faster link.

3. There is a four line track bed between Lapworth and Birmingham Moor Street, which would have to be reinstated as part of the plan.

4. HS2 line could follow the M40 from after Lapworth down to Bicester. The HS2 would branch around Bicester as well for through trains.

The line at somepoint into london would have to become double decked with commuter trains from High Wycombe above the HS2 trains perhaps

I think that the old Chiltern commuter Line between Bicester and High Wycombe can be scrapped with the HS2 line going in instead. Some small communities will loose their train service (sorry) and will have to use buses to either Bicester, Aylesbury or High Wycombe. For some overall journey times will be less, a few pople will have their journey times extended.

Chiltern line stations to be scrapped on my plans:
Haddenham and Thame Parkway
Prices Risborough
Saunderton

The purpose of this is not for me to create a plan in every detail it is to encourage people to create a solution for less money so people can choose, between the current government HS2 proposals or a slightly more interconnected approach, with slightly extended journey times between Birmingham and London as a result.

Its just to save on costs on my plans some small communities would have to loose their commuter station.

James Arathoon

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James Arathoon
 23 April 2013 10:26 AM
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jarathoon

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My mistake there is a separate train line from Prices Risborough to Alyesbury so they keep a train service. This is starting to make sense to me now. There really is a very long stretch of the Chiltern Line between Bicester and High Wycombe which serves next to nobody, that won't be able to commute into london some other way. Just goes to show that the implicit decision to keep a service can become prohibitively expensive (billions of pounds for very few people)But you need to look at the problem from a range of different perspectives to see this soemtimes.

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James Arathoon

Edited: 23 April 2013 at 10:34 AM by jarathoon
 23 April 2013 12:29 PM
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jarathoon

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In my plans Birmingham Moor street could combine into an extended Birmingam Metropolitan station, with the London bound platforms would be at roughly 90 degrees to the Manchester and Leeds bound platforms. The alternative is that all the HS2 london bound trains be sent round into the new Birmingam Metropolitan as well.

In terms of my plan, trains won't be able to get up to full HS2 speed until after leaving High Wycombe. So travel time is extended slightly at the London end. However direct trains to Birmingham will not have to skirt around the eastern side of the city and this may save a few minutes at the Birmingham end of the run.

The out of town Warrick/ Leamington Spa station I had in mind is probably too close to Birmingham to be worthwhile given that it would mean four line track for a considerable distance to avoid having to slow the trains. So that idea is probably too expensive unless town planners think it is a good idea to build new conurbations south west of the M40 between stratford-upon-avon and Leamington Spa.

If the Warrick/ Leamington Spa station is ditched then the costs will substantially reduce. It all depends on how we anticipate Britain to grow and where the new populations are housed. Using the HS2 investment to help leverage new priavte sector housing development is key to making best use of the public investment.

James Arathoon

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James Arathoon
 27 April 2013 12:52 PM
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cjmyerscough

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Professor McNaughton's article gives some information about how passengers might actually use HS2 to make journeys - a topic which has been conspicuously absent from the consultation documents and other material published so far. It does not however give specific information on three points, all of which are essential to achieving the published journey times, and vital to considering the viability of the scheme. So can he please confirm that:
1) Although the idea of directing passengers to locations on the train would be helpful, advance seat reservations will NOT be compulsory, and that if necessary passengers will be allowed to stand for their journey time of typically 50 - 80 minutes (comparable to that of many outer suburban journeys on which passengers prefer to stand rather than wait for the next train). Clearly the aim should be to avoid standing happening to any great extent, but if all passengers were confined to catching a particular train, with no guarantee that they would be able to take the next train if they missed it, they would have to aim to arrive at the station earlier in case there were delays on their way, and then usually waste time waiting for their train.
2) There will be NO requirement on passengers to arrive at the ticket barrier (of whatever form) any set 'check-in' time before the train departs. Doubtless most passengers would arrive in sufficient time to be directed to a location on the train, but it is essential that the ability to 'dash down the platform just before the train departs' should remain; and
3) The eventual detailed proposals and costings WILL include the capital and operating costs of the improvements and new construction needed to provide connecting services from the various proposed stations, capable of handling promptly and quickly the large numbers of people arriving and departing with each train. It is NOT sufficient to say that these may be provided in due course by local interests.
 27 April 2013 03:15 PM
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jarathoon

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cjmyerscough,

I am not sure that Professor McNaughton is a member of the IET, he is a civil engineer. Here are my comments on your points...

1. Train reservations are commercial decision for the train operators. They may choose to have a compulsory reservation system for busy times, but not at off-peak times. Compulsory reservations may be commercially sensible on the London to Birmingham part of the journey, but not further north even on the same train.

If a compulsory reservation system is in place and you have an open ticket, then you will need to make a new reservation for the next available service. This is the general practice for high speed trains in France.

I don't think it is a necessary or advisable policy option to allow people to stand on a high speed service, especially if there is a regular service and the system of getting a new reservation (and paying the necessary supplement to move a restricted advance ticket) is made much easier and quicker.

I don't think there should be a winner takes all in terms of train supply. As long as the trains meet the technical and timetable specs demanded by the line operator, then they should be allowed to run, if that is what the operators want to do (I am assume that the large line capacity allows more than one commercial train operator to operate services on the line). For example if a train operator wanted to order some very high spec Pullman style trains to meet the needs of the peak time London to Birmingham business market then they should be allowed to do this, even if these trains are made by a different manufacturer to the rest of the trains operating on the line.

2. I think if you arrive earlier than a set time before a service leaves then you should get a small discount voucher for your next journey. People can then judge how much their time is worth and choose the appropriate course of action to either save money or spend time doing something else.

3. In terms of your third point I agree. HS2 for me should be built as part of a wider vision for the future of our railways. The public need to know how the new services will integrate into the rest of the network to judge the cost-benefits for themselves.

The Department of Energy and Climate Change built an online simulator for the energy economy, perhaps the HS2 team could put some of their modelling and simulation data on line in a graphical form so people can play with it. Then the new people flows can be seen in the context of existing flows and you could see what happens if you put particular lines out of action or make new connections where none existed before.

James Arathoon


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James Arathoon
 29 April 2013 02:50 PM
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jarathoon

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The people of swindon might not of realised how a HS2 station at Bicester helps them (along with added infrastucture improvements on the Swindon to Oxford line).

[I don't live in Swindon I live in Hertfordshire so I don't have to declare an interest in this, its just a thought]

By infrastucture improvments on the Swindon to Oxford line I mean engineering to speed up the dicot by-pass curve etc.

Current Journey Times from Swindon to the North and the North East:

Swindon to Oxford - Around 40 minutes (Changing at Didcot)
Swindon to Bicester - Around one and a half hours
Swindon to Milton Keynes - Around two and a half hours
Swindon to Aylesbury - Around two hours and 40 minutes
Swindon to Birmingham - Over two hours (via gloucester)

I have been told in quite dogmatic terms that replacing the existing chiltern line between Bicester and High Wycombe with the new Hs2 line and adding a new Hs2 station at Bicester is simply not possible.

However I think a new Hs2 station at Bicester is the only way to make HS2 really work for the people of Oxfordhire and Buckinghamshire etc, who will have to put up with the inconvenience of the trains flying to and fro each day.

A couple of double decker trains from Bicester each morning will take all the commuters from the town (along with those from Banbury with one change) into london much more quickly and comforably than a much larger number of the existing slower services. The number of trains needed for all these commuters is slashed. Energy costs per commuter mile travelled can be slashed.

So now the quesion comes can we design certain HS2 trains and services such that they are commuter friendly? This means using logistical strategies to distribute commuters who join the train at Bicester (and other stations like it) along the full length of the train, to avoid everyone trying to get into the same door.

How do we cope with the very "peaky" one way flows morning and evening that commuters give rise to without spending too much on train infrastructure and without trying to move lots of half empty trains at high speed (and high energy cost) around the network at off-peak times?

Should we be able to get double decker trains from Birmingham to Stratford each morning as well as Euston or Paddington? How would this be best done, if it were considered desirable? Can Cross-rail even take the loading gauge required by double decker trains?

What about Waterloo can we reorder and regig things a bit to avoid some of the expensive and time consuming eurostar conversion work at Waterloo?

How do we improve services from London to Bristol and from London to Cardiff?

James Arathoon

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James Arathoon
 29 April 2013 04:21 PM
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jarathoon

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Once you have connected up Swindon-Oxford-Bicester-Milton Keynes-Bedford as a possible way of keeping some of the rail passenger traffic originating in Bristol, Cardiff and Swidon etc away from london; where do you build a line to make the final link in the chain from Bedford to Cambridge, to recreate a varsity line.

One possibility is to branch off the Bedford to Milton Keynes line just before bedford, run along the side of the A421 link road a short way before linking into the old line bed which used to link Bedford and Shefford. From Shefford you would need to create a new line to Letchworth and attach into the Peterborough and Cambridge lines from there.

The Bedford-Letchworh-Cambridge way is longish kink but if Swindon /Oxford trains to Cambridge trains were fast enough it would make a quicker route than going via London and changing stations there.

Just a thought.

James Arathoon

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James Arathoon
 29 April 2013 08:41 PM
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jarathoon

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Crossrail apparently hasn't been designed to allow double decker trains, because it costs too much to bore the tunnels that size. Well that is interesting....

So I expect the same thing will happen with the new tunnels taking hs2 under London.

Instead of creating a new underground section for the central line, which doesn't need double decker trains they will end up putting HS2 in a tunnel which does. Single decker London underground trains and other commuter trains which don't need the head room will run overground to West Rislip and the HS2 trains which do will run underground instead.

What if HS2 needs to accept double decker trains for commercial operaion reasons:

- creating a new central line tunnel starting somewhere between east acton and north acton might free up enough track space to run HS2 over ground. A number of new underground stations would be needed up until Ruislip Gardens. The over ground track beds may need to be lowered for the double decker trains, to avoid having to demolish all the bridges as in the old HS2 plan that everyone hated.

- the alternative would be drilling expensive new wide bore tunnels with a loading gauge to accept double decker trains.

I expect not allowing double decker trains on the HS2 line will be the uktimate path chosen by the HS2 project team because they don't care if the train operators will be able to make a profit or not on the route; its not their job to care about such things or have any sort of long term vision for the future of the railways for that matter.

James Arathoon

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James Arathoon
 29 April 2013 11:53 PM
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rm2001

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Might be useful to have a 'voting' system on forums - to be able to vote 'agreement' or not with a comment.
 07 May 2013 07:58 PM
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cjmyerscough

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jarathoon would be right about the fares structure being a commercial decision for the operator if the operator were financing all or even a substantial proportion of the costs. But that isn't expected to happen

The point about HS2 is surely that it makes the journey time from London to Birmingham the same as it is now to Brighton, and the time to Leeds the same as it is now to Southampton. The fares structure for those journeys is simple for most passengers. They use full fare tickets, cheaper off-peak tickets, or season tickets. They get onto the trains right up to when they go. That's the structure which works best for journeys of this length. The TGV in France is quite different, most journeys are much longer.

There's no point in spending a lot of money on HS2 if much of the time saving is to be frittered away through increased formality and delay in actually getting on the trains.
 07 May 2013 10:29 PM
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jarathoon

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cjmyerscough,

I can't speak for what the train operators will ultimately want to do, but they should have a publicly visible role in the Hs2 design process even at this early stage.

Some thoughts:

1. Train operators will want to make life easy for passengers; they have a commercial interest in doing this. However they will want to fill high speed trains to operate profitably (whilst not overfilling them, so passengers have to stand). If reservations are required to do this, then this could perhaps be done using a mobile phone app, allowing passengers to confirm their reservation and seat location, whilst on the move even, minutes before boarding the train.

2. Double deck trains give the option of packing more people into each train or alternatively increasing the space, service and comfort level for each passenger accommodated. So at the economy end why shouldn't we aim for cheaper ticket deals than we have now?

At the business/premium end, why shouldn't there be space for other things, be that dining facilities, private compartments, computer tablet hire, document printing, binding, scanning and photocopying facilities, or even ordering a hire car for the onward journey. I don't see why we have to do things exactly the way we do now; that seems an unduly conservative attitude to take. Why can't we find new ways (or old ways) of doing things better?

3. Train operators will have to pay the line and station charges etc and also the train leasing + staff costs. I think we should see some reference running costs from HS2 Ltd to get an idea of roughly how much the train operators will need to charge to make a business case for running profitably. If subsidies are to be applied, how will this work? and what level of subsidy will be needed, for a given HS2 budget?

4. If demand is not high enough to run fast services at certain times of the day then should operators be allowed to share services and should trains be allowed to run at slower speeds during those times?

5. Whether HS2 goes ahead in its present form or not, we still need spend more money on our railways, because car use is declining and train passenger numbers are going up at the 5-6% a year level at the moment. When similar trends took place the other way around (from rail to roads), as a society we invested heavily in new road infrastructure to cater for the new demand.

However we live in a different time now, the future needs of society are more complex and nuanced; that why we need to publicly debate these issues thoroughly by considering alternative ways of spending large amounts of money on infrastructure.

James Arathoon


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James Arathoon
 11 May 2013 01:17 PM
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jarathoon

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For those of you looking to witness and contribute to a debate on the Hs2 line north of Birmingham, the Institute of Civil Engineers (ICE) along with some other Institutions have organised an event just for you.

http://www.ice.org.uk/Events-conferences/Events

"HS2 Debate - The fast train south is a strain not a gain"

The motion to be debated on the 27 June 2013 at Leeds Metropolitan University is

"This house believes that HS2 will redirect resources away from the regions to the capital"

"We have joined forces with The Royal Town Planning Institute, the Royal Institute of British Architects, the Landscape Institute and the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors to host this debate on the proposed High-speed Rail extensions from Birmingham to Leeds and Manchester. With a line-up of both local and national speakers under the chairmanship of the former Northern Editor of The Guardian, and a member of the Presidential team from each of the five professional bodies on the panel, this promises to be a lively debate."

Great, I hope they choose to film it. (invite for IET.tv perhaps?)


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James Arathoon
Statistics

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