HS2 given green light to begin construction in Aylesbury Vale
The Department for Transport has today give approval for the HS2 project to enter the construction phase.
The project had been given the go ahead by Boris Johnson despite HS2 overshooting their budget by tens of billions of pounds, and running years behind schedule.
You can read about that hereThe Government-commissioned Oakervee Review warned that the final bill could reach £106 billion at 2019 prices.
HS2 Minister Andrew Stephenson said: “While the Government’s top priority is rightly to combat the spread of coronavirus, protect the NHS and save lives, we cannot delay work on our long-term plan to level up the country.
“HS2 will be the spine of the country’s transport network, boosting capacity and connectivity while also re-balancing opportunity fairly across our towns and cities.
“Following the decision earlier this year to proceed with the project, this next step provides thousands of construction workers and businesses across the country with certainty at a time when they need it, and means that work can truly begin on delivering this transformational project.”
Notice to proceed has been given to the four companies who were previously awarded main works civil contracts to build the new line.
The four can now move on from the design and preparatory work phase to begin 'detailed design and construction'.
Mark Thurston, CEO of HS2 Ltd, said:
“In these difficult times, today’s announcement represents both an immediate boost to the construction industry - and the many millions of UK jobs that the industry supports - and an important investment in Britain’s future: levelling up the country, improving our transport network and changing the way we travel to help bring down carbon emissions and improve air quality for the next generation.
“HS2 has been over ten years in development and design. While the country’s focus is rightly on defeating COVID-19, the issuing of Notice to Proceed today ensures that our contractors and their supply chains have the confidence that they can commit to building HS2, generating thousands of skilled jobs across the country as we recover from the pandemic.”