Moor St HS2
A leading transport group has called for the design of Birmingham city centre’s HS2 station to maximise the benefit for passengers from the Black Country by allowing them to transfer from their local and regional services straight on to high-speed rail.
Members of the HS2 Local Connectivity Group want the design of the station in Moor Street to allow for passengers from stations such as Stourbridge, Smethwick Galton Bridge and Solihull to be able to transfer onto international high-speed rail.
The group, made up of authorities, businesses and organisations across the region, is also supporting further tram extensions to the HS2 city centre station benefiting communities in the Black Country served by Midland Metro.
A meeting of Centro, the region’s transport authority, next Monday (Dec 3) will discuss schemes designed to release the maximum benefits from high-speed rail in the West Midlands.
The schemes have been put forward by the HS2 Local Connectivity Group as essential to maximise economic benefits and ensure high-speed rail is integrated fully with local and regional transport.
Centro chief executive Geoff Inskip said: “The Black Country will benefit from jobs and a boost to its economy, but HS2 will also release capacity on increasingly crowded existing lines for more passenger and freight services.
Black Country and HS2
“However many people in the Black Country perhaps haven’t realised they can benefit from a transfer at Moor Street station straight onto high-speed services to London, the North and Europe.”
Mr Inskip added that Centro would be working hard to ensure Black Country passengers served by New Street would also have a short transfer to HS2 at nearby Moor Street station.
“We must ensure local and regional services connect seamlessly with the high-speed rail network so that everyone benefits,” he added.
Mr Inskip said HS2 would bring 10,000 jobs and boost the West Midlands regional economy by £600m each year.
22,000 jobs and £1.5bn pa
But he added: “We know that using this capacity for more passenger and freight services and making sure Moor Street delivers exactly what we need will more than double these benefits to 22,000 jobs and £1.5bn per year.
Mr Inskip said an announcement on the phase 2 route north of Birmingham (to Leeds and Manchester) was expected in December.
“As the Transport Secretary said recently in Birmingham the Government is ‘cracking on’ with HS2. Our challenge is to get the very best deal for our region,” he added.
The HS2 Local Connectivity Group is also calling for a direct link from Coventry to the HS2 Interchange station at Birmingham Airport.