Leeds City Council has made the following comment after meetings held at the Civic Hall today on transport issues attended by Secretary of State for Transport Patrick McLoughlin MP and the Chairman of HS2 Ltd Sir David Higgins.
Following the event, Deputy Leader of Leeds City Council Councillor James Lewis said:
“We were delighted to welcome the Secretary of State for Transport as well as Sir David Higgins and the chairs of the northern combined authorities to Leeds today and it was very welcome to hear of the commitment to tackling the historic lack of transformational investment in transport infrastructure in the north as a priority.
"High-speed rail in the forms of HS2 and HS3 hold the key to unlocking the vast economic potential of the north, together with further significant investment in a fully-integrated modern transport network and the resources and local decision-making powers to help directly benefit millions of people, businesses and communities. Clarity on the final route of HS2 is important to come as soon as possible in order to provide certainty, but also with a continued focus on minimising the impact on communities directly affected.
“We will continue to push for the eastern and northern second phases of HS2 to be built as early as possible so that we can all enjoy the full benefits in terms of jobs, growth and enhanced rail journeys. The cities along the HS2 east corridor already contribute more than 25 per cent (£100bn) of the UK’s GDP, with an additional £4.2bn to be generated through high-speed rail. It would greatly improve the lives and prospects of the 12 million people living there as well as helping to rebalance and strengthen the UK economy as a whole, so without question it will be an essential element to the overall success of the HS2 project.”