Residents affected by the first phase of HS2 will be offered compensation which goes ‘significantly beyond statutory requirements’, claims the government.
The package, which the government says is comparable to that of those affected by HS1 in Kent, could see the government pledge to buy all owner-occupied homes in the ‘safeguarded area’ closest to the route.
Homeowners would also receive an added 10% of the home’s value in compensation.
The news was announced yesterday by the Department for Transport which said: “The government recognises the impact the project is having on property markets and, after careful consideration, has decided to go above and beyond what is required by law.”
The proposal also sets out plans to establish a ‘voluntary purchase zone’ immediately outside of the safeguarded area in rural areas, within which homeowners can sell their homes at their full un-blighted value.
A long term hardship scheme would also be set up to help those needing to move during the development of HS2 but who are unable to sell their home.
The plans could also see a ‘sale and rent back’ scheme for those who wish to stay in properties ultimately required for construction work, measures to provide clarity and reinforce confidence in properties above tunnels and a commitment to work with local authorities, housing associations and affected tenants to develop a strategy for replacing any lost social rented housing.
Rail minister Simon Burns said: “I am determined to do everything I can to minimise the effect of HS2 on those closest to the line. We have developed the right compensation package, providing absolutely the right support for those affected, while protecting the interests of taxpayers.”
The plans will now up for consultation until January.