Published On: Thu, Aug 22nd, 2019

HS2 latest: David Davis claims high speed rail is ‘colossal waste of money’ | UK | News

Earlier this week new Transport Secretary Grant Shapps announced a review on whether HS2 should go ahead. Writing in the Daily Telegraph Mr Davis claimed it would be “excellent news” for Britain’s tax payers. Mr Davis said: “I know from my time as Chairman of the Public Accounts Committee that governments find it hard to change their minds on big expensive projects.”

He added the review should “prove the impetus” the government need to finally scrap the project.

According to Mr Davis, the Government was told in 2010 the total cost of the high-speed railway would be £33billion.

He added this quickly “ballooned” to £56billion.

Recent comments from the HS2 Chairman claimed costs could now reach over £100billion.

Mr Davis said: “Frankly it would not surprise me if the costs spiralled to £200 billion.”

He added: “I, alongside other colleagues in Parliament, have long argued HS2 is a colossal waste of money.

“This review could not have come soon enough.”

The Government has already spent over £6billion on HS2.

JUST IN: HS2 costs to rise by £30bn putting rail project in jeopardy 

He said: “The UK’s growth outlook is strong, global interest rates remain incredibly low and our infrastructure spending has been historically poor and badly delivered.

“But what does not make sense is to spend for the sake of spending.

“The money must be spent intelligently and in the right place.”

The MP for Haltemprice and Howden launched a report with the TaxPayer’s Alliance in May which looked at 28 possible alternatives to HS2.

He believes they could be delivered much cheaper and much faster.

Some of the alternatives include upgrading and electrifying regional rail lines, improving key roadways and building new cycle paths around the country.

He added: “Beyond that, we would have cash to spare on fibre-optic rollout, deficit reductions or tax cuts.”

Mr Davis alleged spending money on alternative plans was a much better value for money.

He said: “We can invest in areas delivering for passengers and where we will see real value for money.”

Mr Davis also claimed HS2 was a “singularly unpopular policy” across the UK.

He said: “Apart from being the right thing to do, cancelling this scheme would be a vote winner in any potential general election campaign.

“The review must derail this run away disaster once and for all.”

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