Out-Law / Your Daily Need-To-Know

A further legal challenge has been launched against the Government's decision to proceed with the proposed £33 billion High Speed 2 network, which will provide high speed rail links between major cities in the UK.

Heathrow Hub Ltd and a related company have launched judicial review proceedings against the Department for Transport's decision to proceed with the network. Both companies have interests in an alternative route.

The Department for Transport announced its plans to proceed with the HS2 network in January. It is a scheme designed to deliver "hugely" enhanced rail capacity and connectivity between Britain's major cities, the Government said. 

An application for permission to bring judicial review proceedings has been lodged on behalf of the companies. In conjunction with its legal challenge of the Government's decision, Heathrow Hub is seeking support for its proposed alternative HS2 route, which includes diverting the London to Birmingham line via Heathrow.

This would allow HS2 to better link up with Crossrail, the M25 and Eurostar, providing better connections between air, road and rail in the UK, said Heathrow Hub.

“ [Heathrow Hub Ltd] is planning a judicial review and is arguing that the government could change the route," a spokesman for Heathrow Hub said, according to a local report. "The company has right to land at Heathrow where a terminal could be built. There is confusion why they've chosen the current route as it's going to upset more people than it will placate."

This is the latest in a series of judicial review challenges of the Government's decision to proceed with its HS2 strategy. 

The HS2 Action Alliance, which represents community interest groups and local authorities in affected areas, has launched a challenge on the Government's failure to comply with EU requirements for environmental assessments and also with regard to defects in consultation.

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