Greeening insists HS2 will create thousands of West Midlands jobs

by William ASTON on January 13, 2012

A £33bn high-speed train network is to create at least 8,000 jobs across two West Midlands sites, according to Transport Secretary Justine Greening.

Phase one of HS2, which will link London and Birmingham, is hoped to be running by the year 2026 after receiving approval from the Coalition government. Ms Greening said that half of the jobs will be at Birmingham’s Curzon Street station site. City council leader Mr Mike Whitby said that the others will be either in or around Birmingham International station while pledging that 22,000 jobs will be created in the West Midlands throughout the service and construction industries.

Ms Greening and the Whitby were speaking as they visited the Curzon Street area after the rail network received the green-light by the government in spite of strong opposition. She said that, through the link being constructed, Birmingham will become the heart of the UK’s railway network much in the same way it is currently the heart of its motorway network.

The Coalition said that the redevelopment of the station on Curzon Street would create 4,000 jobs with broader economic benefits presented to the West Midlands area -which is to become critical and a key part of the country’s regeneration and shift in economic fortunes. Coincidentally, the first ever London to Birmingham train left Curzon Street station in September 1838.

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