Five point plan to decide HS2 site

The boss of Sheffield Chamber has drawn up a five-point plan to decide the best site for an HS2 station - and urged the region to get behind it.

HS2 station in Sheffield city centre by HLM Architects

Executive director Richard Wright has identified five principles to apply to proposed sites at Meadowhall and the city centre. And he hopes they will be used by HS2 Ltd to decide on a single location.

The same method was used in Leeds where HS2 agreed to move the proposed stop after the local authorities, chambers, Local Enterprise Partnership and the business community agreed to support the findings. Mr Wright is now urging Sheffield City Region to do the same.

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The Star is among scores of organisations campaigning for a city centre station to maximise the economic impact.

Sir David Higgins, chairman of HS2, said in a recent speech: “We want a solution that works for the city region. I understand the desire to find a city centre solution.”

Mr Wright said: “Sir David Higgins has clearly left the door open for the region to get its act together and get behind the solution that suits us best.

“I am particularly pleased he talks about overall economic benefits for the wider region. What is interesting is the methodology used in Leeds where a number of options were assessed against five basic principles and everyone got behind the findings.”

The five principles are:

n Maximising the economic impact of HS2 for Sheffield City Region

n Delivering HS3 fast trains between northern city centres

n Future proofing integration of HS2 and HS3

n Alignment with Sheffield City Region’s Strategic Economic Plan

n Driving demand and increasing ticket sales

Mr Wright added: “It is difficult to believe that anybody would disagree to this process.

Certainly, there was overwhelming buy-in at our HS2 Summit.

“Barnsley Council was involved with the Leeds evaluation and signed up for the outcome so I am sure they will not disagree. “The methodology in the Leeds report is excellent.”