High speed rail service in England Essay Paper

high speed rail service in England. This is accomplished by conducting a literature review of the different viewpoints on the project. Once this takes place, is when we can see the short- and long-term challenges with the project.

Over the last several years, the issue of high speed rail service has been increasingly brought to the forefront. Part of the reason for this, is because countries such as Japan have this kind of system in place. While many other EU members (such as France) have been using high speed rail for years to address their transportation needs. In Great Britain, the debate as to if this kind of rail system should be installed and the long-term impact on the economy are being continually debated. The reason why, is because many opponents of the plan feel that it is a waste of taxpayer funds that will provide no economic benefit. Evidence of this can be seen with observations from the Economist, who wrote, “In most developed economies high-speed railways fail to bridge regional divides and sometimes exacerbate them. Especially in smaller countries, upgrading existing, slower networks often makes more sense. Capacity can be increased with longer trains and extended platforms. Some spacious first-class carriages could be converted to more compressed second-class ones; better signaling can increase the average speed of journeys. Britain still has time to ditch this grand infrastructure project should.” (A Better Railway for England 2011) This is significant, because it is illustrating how many people believe that implementing this kind of system in England will waste of money that the government does not have.

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However, despite these claims England has been experiencing tremendous amounts of congestion on existing rail lines. This is causing commuters and many businesses to have added delays. Once this occurs, is when this can reduce productivity and have an impact on nation’s ability to compete on a global scale. As a result, many proponents are advocating that the government should make large investments in this sector. This is designed, to ensure that the transportation system is able to keep up with future demands. To fully understand the arguments made by both sides requires comparing and contrasting different resources on this topic through a literature review. Once this occurs, is when we will be able to offer specific insights that will highlight the benefits and drawbacks associated with high speed rail. This is the point that we can determine if this kind of project is economically viable. (A Better Railway for England 2011)

Literature Review

Arguments that are Supporting High Speed Rail

In the piece of literature titled A Better Railway for England (2011), it is talking about how many opponents claim that building this kind of network in the UK is waste of money. The reason why, is because high speed rail systems cost so much to build and maintain. The article presents an alternative strategy that can address these issues. This involves focusing on six different aspects of the project to include: ensuring that the system will be able to meet current / future capacity, improving the quality of service, effectively integrating the different parts of the network, focus on markets that have the highest amounts of demand, having reasonable prices and concentrating on relieving congestion. These different elements are important, because they are illustrating how high speed rail service in England is a viable alternative. The key for its success requires having the various stakeholders’ views taken into account on the project. If this can be achieved, it will make certain that any kind strategy will be successful over the long-term. As, these ideas are taking into account the views of both side to create a solution that is addressing a host of issues.

Moreover, the article that is titled Britain’s Infrastructure High Speed Two (2009), is discussing how a high speed rail system will benefit the country. As the report, is highlighting several key points that are outlining the strengths of the system. The most notable include: it will reduce congestion, there will be greater levels of productivity, it will integrate the English rail system with the rest of Europe and it can improve the nation’s ability to remain competitive. These different elements are important, because they are showing how this strategy will address Britain’s current and future transportation needs. As a result, the information from this source is corroborating the findings from the previous research by illustrating how this plan will meet nation’s transportation needs. The differences between these articles are this is talking about specific strategies that can address the concerns of opponents. While this piece of literature is highlighting, the positive benefits and ignoring key elements that are important to all stakeholders in the process. Therefore, this source is providing us with background on how high speed rail is necessary and the way this address Britain’s transportation needs in the future. (Britain’s High Speed Two 2009)

Furthermore, the article that is titled Valuing the Benefits of HS2 (2011), is talking about the benefits of a high speed rail system. This is accomplished by looking at a number of different factors that will have an impact on the project to include: the current benefits / drawbacks of the system, wide economic issues and how this will affect local communities. As there are a number of benefits associated with this program to include: there would be shorter travel times, passengers will be able to save money and this kind of system will attract larger numbers of riders. These different elements are important, because they are showing how high speed rail can save money and address the transportation needs of the country. As a result, the information from this source is providing us with some basic background information about how this can address Great Britain’s transportation issues. (Valuing the Benefits of HS2 2011)

Arguments that are Against the Development and Use of High Speed Rail

In the article that is titled A Review of High Speed Rail (2010), it is discussing how there are number of drawbacks associated with the project. The most notable include: future demand has been overestimated, advancements in communication / technology are reducing the number of face-to-face meetings and it is reliant upon heavy amounts of government spending. These different elements are important, because they are showing how there is the possibility that high speed rail could become a major source of losses for the government and private industry. As a result, the information from this source is useful, because it is showing how the projections from the information that were presented earlier are dependent upon everything going right.

Moreover, the article titled Demand for Long Distance Travel (2011), is talking about how many proponents are supporting this kind of program. However, when you look beneath the surface, it is clear that high speed rail will face a number of different challenges. Some of the most notable include: it will have to compete against existing forms of transportation, there are high costs of maintaining this infrastructure and this involves the government spending tremendous amounts of money (when they have a deficit). The information from this source is useful, because it is highlighting how there a number negatives associated with high speed rail. As a result, this is illustrating how if the project is not managed properly it will not meet the needs of the general public. (Demand for Long Distance Travel 2010)


A Better Railway for Britain, 2011.

A Review of High Speed Rail, 2010, Blue Space Thinking Limited.

Britain’s Infrastructure High Speed Two, 2009, Department for Transport.

Demand for Long Distance Travel, 2011.

Financial Analysis HS2, 2010.

High Speed Rail, 2011, Green Language.

Valuing the Benefits of HS2, 2011. Department of Transport.

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