A few thoughts (apologies if these have already been said):
(Original post by Slosh)
HS2 supporters, because I can't ask this much via twitter, and note this isn't a nimby post as I would've supported UK Ultraspeed:
- Cost / regulatory barriers of getting a radically new technology approved in the UK. Large degree of cost uncertainty in trying out something that's so expensive to begin with and relies on technology that's so new to the UK. Which doesn't seem worth it when you consider it doesn't offer that much over HS2...
- There's no compatibility with existing technology - an advantage of HS2 is that even when only part of the network has been completed trains will be able to travel at high speed up to say Birmingham / Manchester and then continue to Scotland on conventional rail.
- The UK is too small and the cities too evenly distributed along its length to get all that much out of trains travelling so fast - consider that trains need to accelerate / decelerate / corner at a rate that's comfortable for passengers. Yes, trains going from London to Scotland non-stop will be able to make the most of this - but will they be able to justify the cost of Ultraspeed on their own? (Not forgetting the fact that you must have built the maglev system the entire way before you can reap the benefits.)
- Looking at the Wikipedia page on this it appears that proponents have completely forgotten planning constraints - their proposals seem to involve building the entire thing on a viaduct and ideas like taking it straight over the Pennines - which, realistically, are never going to happen. I am guessing that in their cost comparisons with HS2 they have assumed this for the maglev but for HS2 have included the cuttings, tunnels etc currently planned, making it a bit of an unfair comparison. (To be honest, a lot of the "pro" arguments on the Wikipedia page could be described as scraping the bottom of the barrel to say the least.)
Last edited by thefish_uk; 27-05-2012 at 00:48.