Raising the disadvantaged areas is a collective term for Boris Johnson’s conservative government. That pledge is now running into the reality of cost. Twice a week, the government broke or withdrew promises — Disposal of parts Implementation of HS2 and Northern Powerhouse Rail projects, and reduced support for social care for poor households. In both cases, the impact is most felt in northern England. NS Political costsIt can be significant, especially in previously worker-owned areas that helped Johnson win the 2019 landslide elections.
Large-scale capital projects need to be rigorously compared to other productivity-enhancing investments in terms of cost-benefit. HS2 is even more problematic as cost estimates have risen to over £ 100 billion.Government £ 96 billion Integrated railway plan Northern leaders estimate a £ 36bn reduction from the overall cost of HS2 and NPR’s vision. This is still a huge investment, if not all new money. However, False economy Is expensive.
For a long time, both projects have overemphasized their ability to reduce travel time. A stronger argument is capacity. The UK needs more railroad tracks to remove cars and cargo from the road and to unload passengers from short-haul flights to meet its zero net commitment. Built in the 19th century, the East and West Coast trunk lines are in full operation, forcing high-speed intercity services between local stopped trains.
The construction of a new corridor dedicated to high-speed, long-distance transportation will free up East and West Coast routes and carry more local and freight services. The same is true for the new East-West Liverpool-Manchester-Leeds route.
The speed and capacity of existing lines can be improved with engineering improvements and digital signals. This allows us to deliver results faster and cheaper. It is a government calculation to dispose of the eastern section of HS2 as part of Leeds and NPR.The revised plan creates winners (some areas offered by upgraded trucks) and losers above all else. Bradford And Leeds.
However, upgrading means years of confusion and is difficult to do while the work is being done. The government’s claims about the speed and frequency of trains carried by the reduced NPR make some bold assumptions about what can be achieved by modernizing the sections of Victorian railroad tracks. However, fast and frequent links between cities in the north are important to achieve the effects of agglomeration and reduce the gap between logistics and skills, making the region a single economic unit competing with the southeast. can do.
Also, the upgrade cannot increase the capacity of the new line. In the 2040s, when the original HS2 and NPR were completed, the upgraded lines could get clogged again. But that is not the problem facing this government or the next.
Given the story of “betrayal” It’s strange that the well-established government in parts of northern England chose to publish its details hours before the railroad was announced. Rules of social care Under the new plan, once state support begins, low-asset households will pay a portion of their long-term care costs longer before reaching the £ 86,000 cap. Effect of Pensioners who own expensive homes in southern England hold a much higher percentage of their wealth than pensioners in the north, where home prices are low.
This looks like a Treasury salami slicing, as the government has some tax margins. Prime Minister Rishi Sunak is committed to maintaining the Tories’ reputation for careful financial management. But the way this is done means that we have to work harder to convince the people of the north that the government is actually working on leveling up-not the other way around.
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