Euston Express is disappointed that the Commons Select committee chose to ignore the inaccurate evidence given by HS2 about our Euston Express scheme. E Ex puts all HS2 and West Coast Main Line trains onto the WCML tracks from Queens Park inwards and avoids the high cost, massive disruption and demolition to streets to the west of the line and at Euston itself. Euston Express, supported by a number of rail professionals, believes it that the existing station can be adapted to accommodate all these trains without taking additional land, except at the south end where the tracks would be extended towards Euston Road, with a passenger deck above all platforms.
It was disappointing that the Committee chose to rely on HS2 views without properly considering challenges to their assertions. For example, for Euston Express:
HS2 stated that GC (continental gauge) lines were a requirement all the way into Euston, but then admitted that this was incorrect.
They stated that Euston Express scheme was more expensive than HS2’s own AP3 scheme at Euston, but then could not (and still cannot) substantiate this with any significant evidence on the station scheme.
The Committee, in its Report para 222, states that E Ex ‘would require high levels of night time construction in a residential area’, whilst appearing to ignore the very much greater disruption, no doubt day and night, from the HS2 scheme from demolishing many properties to the west of the station and approaches, around 2 m tonnes of excavations to be removed by up to 1000 trucks a day for three years.
For Euston Express there is more discussions to be had – with other parts of Network Rail, DfT and TfL since we do believe that a feasible scheme can be built and operated with much less aggravation and costing billions less than the 20 years’ construction nightmare that is the current HS2 proposal.
Sadly, I conclude that the Committee in many instances failed to give proper time to hearing evidence and challenging the promoter. Let us hope that the Lords Select committee behaves better!
HS2 Commons Committee Final report published 22 February 2016:
Euston Express is very grateful for all the support and advice received from Jonathan Roberts of JRC consultants and other professionals in preparing its scheme.