THE POTENTIAL benefits of the controversial High Speed Rail project, which would pass through Stafford Borough, are to be outlined by the Transport Secretary this morning.
Patrick McLoughlin, who hails from Staffordshire, will address the Institute of Civil Engineers in London in support of HS2.
He will cite new research from auditors KPMG, which sest out how HS2 could boost the economy by up to £15bn per year.
Richard Threlfall, KPMG’s Head for Infrastructure, Building and Construction, said: “There have been repeated calls for a business case for the HS2 scheme focused on jobs, productivity and growth. KPMG’s analysis forms a key part of that business case, setting out the economic impact across the country of the HS2 scheme.
“It shows beyond reasonable doubt that HS2 brings net benefits to the country of many times the scheme’s cost. It shows the UK will be £15 billion a year better off with HS2, recovering the cost of the scheme within just a few years.
“Our analysis also shows that HS2 will significantly help counter the corrosive effects on our country of the widening north-south divide. There has been a long-running debate about “who wins” from HS2, the north or the south? The answer is both.”
But many Staffordshire communities are fiercely opposed to the HS2 scheme and have formed campaign groups to fight the plans, which they fear will wreck the countryside and not prove value for money. To read more about local HS2 protests click here.