Benefits of High Speed Rail project exaggerated, secret report reveals

Given the debacle that is Crossrail, do we even believe £56 Bn would be the final figure?
I’m not sure you could find a competent management team in the UK private sector and most definitely not in the public sector.
YM
This from August last year.Has anything changed since then?
"HS2 paid 318 officials at least £100,000 in wages and perks last year, compared to just 115 between 2015 and 2016.The taxpayer-owned company behind the project also spent more than £600 million on consultants – more than double the figure of the year before."
Daily Mail.
 
Given the debacle that is Crossrail, do we even believe £56 Bn would be the final figure?
Well the chairman of the HS2 project certainly doesn't think so.

HS2 cost 'could rise by £30bn'

Now, given that this is the head honcho of the project and has the most reason to talk down such things as projected overspend, it is reasonable to suppose that the reality is that the sky is the limit.

The HSR2 project is rapidly nearing the point of no return (I believe they call it V1 in civil aviation flight deck terminology) and final decisions will have to be made as to its future.

Boris Johnson is not an enthusiastic supporter of the project. It is expected that he will very soon be PM. This could well be an area where he might wish to mark his territory.
 
Given the debacle that is Crossrail, do we even believe £56 Bn would be the final figure?

I’m not sure you could find a competent management team in the UK private sector and most definitely not in the public sector.

YM
Crossrail, surprisingly, was under budget for most of the time (unlike others) till the finals when it all got out of control because of some station control and installation issues.
 
I would be very surprised if it doesn't get built. You only have to look at the area around euston station too see that
some very serious infrastructure is being built on some very, very expensive land.
 
I would be very surprised if it doesn't get built. You only have to look at the area around euston station too see that
some very serious infrastructure is being built on some very, very expensive land.
It has always been so complicated...and I was surprised it smoothly it ran till the last couple of stations involved and how messy it got...

It will get built, too much already invested for it to not to to...and too close to the finish line...
 
It has always been so complicated...and I was surprised it smoothly it ran till the last couple of stations involved and how messy it got...

It will get built, too much already invested for it to not to to...and too close to the finish line...
I think you're both talking about different projects - HS2 and Crossrail.
 
I would be very surprised if it doesn't get built. You only have to look at the area around euston station too see that
some very serious infrastructure is being built on some very, very expensive land.
Started at the right end, then? Some buildings could be re-built for a fraction of the price this fiasco will cost. Already people like John Bishop are being recompensed, the plebs up the line won’t.
On my visits to see relatives in mid-Staffordshire, many councils are banking on HS2 so Stafford or Crewe can be a commuting town for London. Plebs in the way, as usual, will have to make way.
All for the Holy Grail that is “quicker to London”.
How does this help the north of the U.K.? Why not spend some of this money on connecting Liverpool, Manchester, Leeds and Newcastle?
 

Yeo_Man

War Hero
Crossrail, surprisingly, was under budget for most of the time (unlike others) till the finals when it all got out of control because of some station control and installation issues.
Okay and which bits are really really needed to operate a safety critical system?

Concrete farming is easy by comparison.

It easy to be under budget when you leave out half the scope for providing and integrating safety critical systems!!!!

It demonstrates a complete lack of understanding by the senior leadership team of nature of large transportation programmes.

YM
 
Well the chairman of the HS2 project certainly doesn't think so.

HS2 cost 'could rise by £30bn'

Now, given that this is the head honcho of the project and has the most reason to talk down such things as projected overspend, it is reasonable to suppose that the reality is that the sky is the limit.

The HSR2 project is rapidly nearing the point of no return (I believe they call it V1 in civil aviation flight deck terminology) and final decisions will have to be made as to its future.

Boris Johnson is not an enthusiastic supporter of the project. It is expected that he will very soon be PM. This could well be an area where he might wish to mark his territory.
The government should just get the quotes. Trebel the cost and double the completion time...
 

Wooden Wonder

War Hero
In January 2012 I wrote this entry on my blog:

Following the approval of the HS2 rail link between London Euston and Birmingham we can look forward to several years’ entertainment in the media as the project unfolds – I haven’t been so excited by the prospect of a government-run soup-to-nuts cluster-**** since, ooh, anything organised by the MoD. The scope for satire almost defies belief – you just know it’s going to go titsup from day one, and the antics of government ministers and spokespersons to lie/spin their way from the truth to “if-I-say-it-then-it’s-a-fact-and-I-will-deny-all-irrefutable-evidence-to-the-contrary-until-I-am-in-opposition-or-retired-at-which-point-it-will-become-the-new-lot-that-are-lying” is going to be a joy to behold. As – currently, although this may be subject to change in the near future – a higher-rate taxpayer, my heart thumps against my ribs in unbridled delight at the thought of the inevitable tripling of the £33bn cost and doubling of the delivery time … actually, that could just be due to the three chilli-cheese-dogs and pint of port I had for lunch, but let’s give the government the benefit of the doubt.

The tripling of the costs of the 2012 Olympics (government minister: “It has come in under-budget!”) has left me largely unmoved, as I know it will have to proceed in seven months’ time regardless of the state of completion of the venue. Only one thing has piqued my interest there: the prospect of Air Force One being converted into a flaming ball which artistically splatters President O’Bambam all over Canary Wharf … yes, some fuckwit has proposed the deployment of air defence missiles around the Olympic site … which is immediately north of the main flightpath into Heathrow.

Lance Idiot Eccles: “Say, Bluebottle, wouldn’t it be fun to see the firework go off … jus’ press dat button … ooh! Hur hur!”

Sudden, disconcerting, but not entirely unexpectedBANG!

Little Jim: “He’s fallen in the water!”

By the time the HS2 judicial reviews, public enquiries, European Court of Human Rights cases and the sale of what-remains-of-the-United Kingdom to India have completed – costing £33bn in legal fees – we will have a revised proposal consisting of a London-to-Birmingham tunnel and an eco-friendly hand-cart, allowing two people to travel the entire distance in Stygian darkness … per day, due to Elf and Sayfertee not wanting to sign-off the risk of two hand-carts colliding.

Perhaps Alex Salmond is not so daft after all – the sooner he can distance Scotland from any financial involvement in the project the better would be his reckoning I guess.

The first service is currently due to run in 2026; should I survive until then, I will be 68 years old – which, due to HS2-enforced budgetary constraints, will see me only 20 years away from retirement … with still another 10 years after that before I can collect my pension … which will consist of a daily voucher exhangeable for a bowl of gruel and 10 minutes’ sweaty warmth courtesy of pedalling the generator attached to my MP’s electricity supply. Honestly, I can barely suppress the wave of joyous anticipation … or is that just my bladder playing up again?
 
As an environmental testing laboratory we were doing a lot of testing from in and around the project at Euston, we now refuse to accept any samples or work from there, no one seems to be in charge, no one knows what the other is doing and no one seems to know what the hell to make of any of the results, it was nothing but a pain in the arrse to get to speak to anyone so we pulled out of it, many samples were doubled up without them realising that we had already tested them so it's no wonder that the cost is spiraling out of control if just my snap shot of it is anything to go by
 
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Riga

War Hero
Given the debacle that is Crossrail, do we even believe £56 Bn would be the final figure?

I’m not sure you could find a competent management team in the UK private sector and most definitely not in the public sector.

YM
Why is Crossrail a debacle?
Interfacing has been a challenge at stations, however, the biggest debacle has been in management and oversight, especially when Boris Johnson was Mayor, compounded by Khan not picking up the brief and challenging the marketing and publicity.
 
Why is Crossrail a debacle?
Interfacing has been a challenge at stations, however, the biggest debacle has been in management and oversight, especially when Boris Johnson was Mayor, compounded by Khan not picking up the brief and challenging the marketing and publicity.
You're blaming Khan on this? I am no big fan of his, but most of the project was orchestrated under Boris for over 4 years....with some technical challenges at the final finish points..
 
Major government run infrastructure project going over budget and tits-up? I'm shocked. Shocked, I tell you.
 
As an environmental testing laboratory we were doing a lot of testing from in and around the project at Euston, we now refuse to accept any samples or work from there, no one seems to be in charge, no one knows what the other is doing and no one seems to know what the hell to make of any of the results, it was nothing but a pain in the arrse to get to speak to anyone so we pulled out of it, many samples were doubled up without them realising that we had already tested them so it's no wonder that the cost is spiraling out of control if just my snap shot of it is anything to go by
Interesting. I work with chaps who request that kind of thing (but not that part of the project). I may ask them how they think it’s going.
 
Having been involved in commercial leadership roles on a number of billion pound plus infrastructure projects, I’d say it is nearly impossible to properly estimate and budget them. However good your pricing philosophy and risk management it will rarely be right.

The other issue is the psychology of public sector finance approvals. If the true cost of H2S was exposed at the start, it simply wouldn’t be approved either by the Treasury or politically in the court of public opinion. Equally, it’s pretty much impossible to estimate the benefits with much else but a scientific wild arrsed guess.

I wonder how much of these blown out budgets are deliberate in order to manage the approvals processes.
 

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