Harrow backs HS2

LB Harrow have come out in support of High Speed 2, on the basis it will assist their regeneration plans for Wealdstone.

Other West London Boroughs are opposing the line, on the basis that it will produce significant disruption for residents, and that the overall investment in the line is, in their opinion, not good value. Boris Johnson has said he feels the line should be tunnelled under West London, and a report produced recently by the Institute for Economic Affairs suggested that the business case for the line is flawed.

Harrow Council are reported to think HS2 will ease congestion and aid regeneration in Wealdstone, and to have given their support for the link in a response to a Department of Transport consultation.

While HS2 would not pass through Harrow, the council has highlighted the benefits it would bring to the Wealdstone area, particularly shifting passengers away from existing services on the West Coast Mainline route, freeing up capacity for local services stopping at Wealdstone.

Councillor Phillip O’Dell, the council's portfolio holder for environment and community safety, told the Harrow Times: “High speed rail offers a once in a generation opportunity for Harrow and a much needed release valve to overcrowding on the West Coast Mainline.

“Even though HS2 would not pass through Harrow, it could have a hugely beneficial effect on Harrow and Wealdstone station, freeing up capacity for additional trains.

“This would increase the appeal of the Wealdstone area to commuters and be a significant boost to efforts to regenerate the surrounding area.

“On a national scale, we firmly believe that HS2 will promote economic growth and reduce road and air travel, bringing long-term environmental benefits too.

“Harrow will enjoy those benefits too and that is why we are showing our support for high speed rail to the DfT.”

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