High-speed rail line in Britain

The British infrastructure authority Network Rail has published its proposal for a north-south high-speed line (HSL). This would be the first domestic HSL in Britain, the only existing HSL is the link to the Channel Tunnel. The proposal is notable, because in most options the line would be ‘self-contained’. No trains would join the line from the existing network, and none would leave the HSL for destinations on the existing network. That is probably the only feasible option, given the planned high frequencies – every 3 minutes.

Also notable is that the route is not specified, only the urban areas served. There is not even a vague map, only diagrams. It is clear that the line will avoid most urban areas, and that several stations will be located at motorway junctions. This strategy has been criticised in France – isolated TGV stations, accessible only by car. Even in major cities, the terminals would not necessarily be near existing stations – a mistake already made at Stratford, on the Channel Tunnel line.

High-speed rail line in Britain

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