HS2 Ltd Executive Chair to face Transport Committee over rail project’s costs and timescales
HS2 Ltd’s Executive Chair, Sir Jon Thompson, will be questioned by the Transport Committee on managing costs as the project progresses.
The cross-party Committee will ask Sir Jon how he is bearing down on costs and how further delays will be avoided.
There will also be questions about the discrepancies between HS2 Ltd’s estimations of time scales and costs (as stated in the company’s last six-monthly update in Nov 23) and the Department for Transport’s, including with regard to redeveloping Euston Station.
The November update said that Phase 1’s eventual cost is estimated to be between £49bn and £57bn (at 2019 prices) including works north to Fradley and the Handsacre Junction.
Sir Jon will be asked to update the Committee on how much money is likely to be made back from the sale of properties on the route of Phase 2a, and what HS2 Ltd is doing to keep residents informed.
MPs will be interested to hear updates on parts of the project including the awarding of contracts for railway systems, stage 1 of the design and build contract for Birmingham Curzon Street Station, and HS2’s work on the Calvert Box section of East West Rail.
They may also ask about plans to appoint a Chief Railway Officer, what the role will entail and how it will fit into current lines of accountability and decision making.
Sir Jon has been HS2’s Executive Chair since Mark Thurston’s departure as Chief Executive in September 2023.