In response to the Public Accounts Committee’s report, published today, that says the High Speed 2 rail project has gone “badly off course,” Dr Richard Wellings, Head of Transport at the Institute of Economic Affairs, says:
“It’s absolutely scandalous that the government hid HS2’s problems from taxpayers and MPs. If the delays and ballooning budget had been revealed earlier there would have been more pressure to cancel this ill-conceived project, potentially saving over £100 billion.
“Unfortunately, senior transport officials have a strong vested interest in the scheme going ahead. HS2 is a lucrative gravy train, providing them with some of the highest paid jobs in the civil service, so it’s not surprising that they resorted to dishonourable behaviour to protect it.
“This damning report hardly inspires confidence in the management of the scheme going forward. It is not too late to cancel HS2 before even more taxpayers’ money is wasted.”
NOTES TO EDITORS
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For further reading:
Failure to Transform: High-Speed Rail and the Regeneration Myth
The High Speed Gravy Train
High Speed 2: the next government project disaster?
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