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Government “not pursuing” HS1-HS2 rail link

The UK government has said it is “not pursuing” the construction of a rail link between HS2 and HS1 and instead plans to improve pedestrian links between Euston and St Pancras stations.

Presenting plans to accelerate construction of HS2 beyond Birmingham to Crewe, the government quietly quashed speculation about the possibility of connecting the corridor with HS1.

HS2 said in the summer that it was looking at options to join up the two railways. Original plans had included a single-track link between HS1 and HS2, but this was scrapped shortly after Sir David Higgens was appointed as chairman in 2014.

In a report published on November 30, the government said: “It was originally proposed that a rail link be provided between Euston and St Pancras stations in London to enable limited direct services to the Continent. However, this would have had a significant impact on residents in Camden and on both freight and passenger services.

“We have looked at alternative options and found that it was not possible to identify a viable rail option capable of meeting the strategic aspirations whilst successfully addressing stakeholder concerns. This was because the options were complex and expensive to construct and would have delivered less attractive, less frequent train services for HS2 passengers travelling to European destinations.

“Instead, we have concluded that enhanced pedestrian links will enable passengers to have the choice and flexibility to access the full range of international services that operate from St Pancras.

“Given the access to London Underground already included as part of HS2, which will provide convenient step-free access for passengers travelling between the two stations, the government is not pursuing the construction of a rail link between HS2 and HS1. Instead, we are focussing on plans to develop even better pedestrian links between Euston and St Pancras stations.”

 

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