Sheffield chamber declares support for HS2 amid doubts
Sheffield Chamber of Commerce & Industry has declared its support for the HS2 high speed rail project following concerns being raised about costs being ‘out of control’.
Richard Wright, director of policy & representation at the chamber, issued a statement in response to the findings of the House of Lords Economic Committee, which found that the current £55.7bn budget is unrealistic and would need to be reassessed.
Richard said of the HS2 project: “Despite the challenges, Sheffield Chamber will continue to support HS2 and NPR, just like it will support investments in local connectivity… because it is the right thing to do.”
He criticised what he felt was a London-centric approach to investment:“The North has been chronically underfunded on infrastructure for years and these investments will start to address that…There is an absolute need for the UK economy to be less dependent on London and the South East and that is at the heart of HS2 and NPR’s purpose.”
He also argued that the growth the project will offer outweighs the concerns: “We must control costs but we must also understand the benefits the investments will bring. It’s not a zero-sum game.”
“We absolutely believe it is the right thing to do to redress the lack of investment in the north and to make it an attractive region to invest in and create the jobs for the future.”
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