A council in North West England is lobbying for a range of local transport improvements in a bid to ‘maximise’ potential connections with HS2.
A report from Cheshire East Council’s cabinet has listed a string of projects to ensure Crewe could maximise the benefits of a North West HS2 superhub station, including improved road, rail and transit links.
While the Government is yet to formally decide on the hub’s location, Cheshire East anticipates citing the hub in Crewe could create up to 64,000 local jobs and a ‘development corridor’ from Northwich to Stoke-on-Trent.
Councillors will now work with the Department for Transport, Highways Agency, Local Enterprise Partnership and neighbouring authorities to ready regional infrastructure for the predicted arrival of HS2 in 2027.
A council report claimed local A roads between the hub station and the M6 would form a ‘vital’ link for commuters and businesses.
Cheshire East has also confirmed it will push for a dual carriageway A500 expressway, linking Crewe to Junction 16 of the M6, alongside improved connections between the city and Middlewich.
The council’s growth task force said such developments were planned for 2020 onwards but ‘a great deal of consideration’ needed to be given to how they could be delivered and funded.
The town hall also stressed the importance of a local transit link joining Crewe town centre to the hub station if the site is deemed unsuitable for HS2.
Cllr Michael Jones, leader of Cheshire East Council, said: ‘Even though the Government has not yet formally decided on Crewe as the location for the North West HS2 superhub, the council is working on a strategy to create a “High Growth City” to make sure we secure the right level of investment.
‘We are considering how the expected growth in Crewe and the surrounding area will affect demand for services like education, health, leisure and waste and we will ensure that plans are in place to prepare for it.’
The plans came as reports arose that a major civil engineering firm would be moving near to the planned site for the HS2 headquarters in Birmingham. The Birmingham Post this morning claimed Jacobs Engineering was planning to open an office in the midlands city, in moves expected to deliver a significant local jobs boost.