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HS2: detailed plans announced
The government has announced detailed plans for the UK’s biggest-ever rail project with a revised route for the second stage of the £55.7bn HS2 high-speed line and the award of the first large construction contracts.
Chris Grayling, transport secretary, confirmed that trains capable of reaching 250mph would run directly into the existing city-centre station in Sheffield, rather than a new dedicated station on the city’s outskirts, as originally planned.
He also revealed £6.6bn of construction work on the initial London to Birmingham section, including £1.4bn of contracts for a consortium including Carillion, the troubled UK contractor.
It is expected that the £6.6bn of seven construction contracts would create 16,000 jobs on the first phase of the HS2 line, which is due to run between London and Birmingham and open in 2026.
HS2 is one of the center pieces of the government’s plans to upgrade Britain’s creaking infrastructure. The seven contracts awarded to four consortium's cover the design and construction of bridges, tunnels, embankments and viaducts between London and the West Midlands.
Acknowledgements: FT and Construction Enquirer