According to the BBC’s understanding, the government is getting ready to declare that it will be delaying the building of certain parts of HS2 in order to save money.
It is anticipated that the delay will have the greatest impact on travel between Manchester and Crewe, as well as between Birmingham and Crewe.
But, some reports have suggested that Euston’s end-of-line design teams could be impacted as well.
Contractors are considering whether or not they will need to reassign the staff members who are already putting in work at that location.
The fast train will connect the capital with the midlands and the north of the country.
On the other hand, it has been plagued by setbacks and spiraling costs. It was anticipated to cost approximately £33 billion in 2010, but that number has subsequently increased to at least £71 billion.
Recently, the chief executive officer of HS2 Ltd, Mark Thurston, gave an interview to the BBC in which he stated that he along with the government was considering the phasing of the development as well as the timeframe.
The high rate of inflation is causing the project to struggle financially as a result of the rising cost of materials.
It is common knowledge that the government is hoping that the delays will give them the opportunity to stretch the cost out over a longer period of time, making it more affordable by lowering the amount of money spent annually.
Prime Minister Theresa May has made it clear that she wants to see a reduction in the national debt as a proportion of GDP within the next five years. Chancellor Jeremy Hunt will present his budget proposal the following week.
Simon Clarke, a member of the Conservative Party and former head of the Treasury Department’s Chief Secretary’s Office, suggested in a tweet that the delaying in construction “would be a smart move.”
“Having served as chief secretary and witnessed the progression of HS2, I have significant reservations regarding the project’s value for money and its ability to keep costs under control,” he stated.
Mr. Thurston stated a few days ago that the effects of inflation over the past year have been “substantial,” Whether that be in steel, timber, aggregates for all of the concrete we need to utilise to create the work, labour, all of our energy bills, fuel, or any combination of the above, the price tag is going to be significant.
He stated that HS2 was working with vendors as well as the government to find measures to mitigate the escalating costs of the project.
“We are considering phasing of the project, the timing of the project, and the areas in which we may use our supply chain to obtain many of the items that are becoming more expensive for us as a result of inflation.”, He stated.