Responding to HS2’s announcement about the recommended Sheffield station and revised route to West Yorkshire, Cllr Keith Wakefield, Chair of the West Yorkshire Transport Committee said:
“HS2 will bring a transformational change to West Yorkshire’s transport system and a huge boost to the City Region economy.
“We are determined that the benefits of HS2 should be felt right across our Region and I am pleased to see that these proposed changes open up opportunities for greater integration with Transport for the North’s Northern Powerhouse Rail network.
“I am keen to discover how improved links between HS2 and the existing rail network might provide a way of Northern Powerhouse Rail services running through Leeds station to Sheffield.
“We do of course need to look closely at the local implications of the new route alignment on individual West Yorkshire districts and the opportunities that new Parkway stations will offer, as well as continuing to press for construction of HS2’s Yorkshire leg to start as soon as possible.”Leeds City Council, Councillor Judith Blake said:
“I welcome this announcement, which completes the proposals for the eastern leg of HS2.
“We now need government to prioritise their phase two route decision and make a strong commitment to deliver this project at the earliest opportunity.
“We will continue to push for this certainty and for the building of the eastern leg to be advanced so the benefits of high-speed rail can be felt across the whole of the north as soon as possible.
“Accelerating the pace of construction and building from the north continue to be priorities for partners across the city region.
“High speed rail will have a transformative effect on cities, towns and regions both on and off the route, in terms of new jobs, skills, regeneration and business opportunities. Along with the plans for Northern Powerhouse Rail, communities across the north will benefit from better connections and faster journey times.
“We understand that the line of route decision is an important one for our communities. We continue to press HS2 Ltd for mitigation of the line of route and to review compensation arrangements for those adversely affected."
The new option proposes that HS2 services between London and Sheffield would take a spur off the new north-south high speed line and travel directly to the existing Sheffield Midland station using the existing railway line. These trains therefore could potentially also call at Chesterfield.
There is also the future option of HS2 services extending onwards to the existing Meadowhall station, Rotherham, or Barnsley.
A city centre station solution for Sheffield high speed services would allow the main HS2 line to be built east of the previously proposed route, through less densely populated areas that would avoid the complexities of building a line via Meadowhall.
The newly proposed route would cut journey times on services heading to Leeds, York and Newcastle, and would also reduce the cost of the project by around £1billion.
HS2 Ltd will also investigate the possibility of a parkway station on this newly proposed route, which in part follows the M18 motorway.Link to the HS2 Ltd. announcement (opens in new window).