UK Ultraspeed

Malcolm Watt
Posts: 2
Joined: 9. Apr 2021, 16:01

UK Ultraspeed

Unread post by Malcolm Watt »

The UK Ultraspeed team was formed in 2002, under project leader Dr Alan James, with the object of providing one route connecting together Glasgow, Edinburgh, south to Newcastle and Teesside, onwards and west to Leeds and Manchester, with a spur to Liverpool. South from Manchester to Birmingham and the West Midlands, dividing at the foot of the M1, right to Heathrow and left into London at Stratford or Kings Cross/St Pancras.
The capital cost, at that time, was estimated within the range of £4.0b to £5.4b.
Travel times were calculated with 2 minute stopping times at each station as:

Glasgow to Edinburgh Airport 10 mins
to Edinburgh Parkway 20 mins
to Newcastle Airport 52 mins
to Gateshead 60 mins
to Teesside Park 75 mins
to Leeds 94 mins
to Manchester East 112 mins
to Manchester Airport 119 mins
to Wolverhampton 179 mins
to Central Birmingham 189 mins
to Birmingham Airport/NEC 198 mins
to M1/M25 Parkway 222 mins
to Stratford 234 mins
or to Heathrow 232 mins

We are still waiting to find out timings of HS2, which is now planned as a two arm route from Euston
1 via Birmingham to Manchester
2 via Crew to Leeds
with high speed trains running onto current or upgraded lines to Glasgow, via west coast, and Edinburgh, via east coast, maximum speed 140mph with many sections much lower. Journey times will be longer, costs have escalated, expected to be towards £100b.
There will be no cross country possibility except by a third "high speed" line from Liverpool, through Manchester to Leeds.

Who knows, the government may well see sense and consider maglev from Liverpool, through Leeds and Newcastle to Edinburgh.
We can only hope.

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Posts: 121
Joined: 3. Apr 2021, 16:07

Re: UK Ultraspeed

Unread post by jok »

The construction of HS2 using old HSR (wheel-rail) technology and the refusal of the Department for Transport to even look at UK Ultraspeed in any detail represents, in my view, one of the biggest mistakes in UK infrastructure policy in recent decades. Instead of doing better than the planners 'from the continent' (EU), the established networks of the wheel-rail industry have been allowed to work unchecked. UK Ultraspeed was probably one of the most interesting Transrapid projects of the last 20 years. Unfortunately, the opportunity has been squandered so far.
Best regards,

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