HS2 publishes update on development progress in 2020

Posted: 4 January 2021 | | No comments yet

The update from HS2 includes figures regarding recruitment and apprenticeships, sustainability, construction and rail freight.

HS2 publishes update on development achievements in 2020

Credit: HS2 Ltd/ Jeremy De Souza

HS2 Ltd – the company building Britain’s new high-speed, low carbon railway – has released a series of images to celebrate the forward momentum of the project during 2020. 

The images show the extent to which work has progressed at some of its biggest sites on the route between London and the West Midlands. The pictures include birds eye views of the massive South Portal site near the M25 – from where HS2’s Tunnel Boring Machines will dig north under the Chilterns – and the Long Itchington site in Warwickshire, where a second pair of TBMs will make the journey into Birmingham.

Works at the Chiltern Tunnel south portal site

Credit: HS2 Ltd – Works at the Chiltern Tunnel south portal site.

Also pictured are the sites of HS2’s four mega stations – Old Oak Common, Euston, Curzon Street in Birmingham and Interchange in Solihull, where several huge bridges have been moved into place. In addition, there are never-before-seen images from sites in Willesden, its rail freight depot and some of the amazing archaeology that has been unearthed in 2020.  

Discovery of the Roundhouse at Curzon Street Station site, Birmingham

Credit: Nodrog/Hs2 Ltd – Discovery of the Roundhouse at Curzon Street Station site, Birmingham.

HS2 in 2020 in numbers

  • 22,000 new jobs are being recruited as a result of starting full construction on the project, as announced by the UK Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, in September 2020
  • Three planning approvals have been gained for HS2’s enormous, state-of-the-art stations at Old Oak Common in North London, Interchange in Solihull and Curzon Street in Birmingham
  • £12 billion worth of contracts are now available for UK companies to work on HS2’s first phase between London and the West Midlands
  • 190,000 trees have been planted, taking HS2’s total up to 430,000 planted across Phase One, and 60 wildlife habitats have now been created between London and Warwickshire
  • Two enormous Tunnel Boring Machines have arrived in the UK ready to bore under the Chilterns, with another two TBMs on the way to HS2’s Long Itchington site ready to tunnel under the route into Birmingham. Another two contracts have also been awarded for TBMs to dig the London tunnels into Euston
  • 412 apprentices have been welcomed onto the project, a fifth of the intended 2,000 apprenticeships that will be offered during the construction of HS2
  • Two huge modular bridges have been moved into place at the Interchange station site. One 2,750-tonne, 65-metre bridge structure was installed in just two days. A second 45 metre, 914 tonne modular bridge over the A446 in Solihull was moved into place in only 45 minutes
  • 1.5 million lorries have been taken off of Britain’s roads as the first rail freight delivery rolls into HS2’s Washwood Heath site in Birmingham. Fifteen thousand freight trains are set to move 10 million tonnes of aggregate for HS2 over the next 10 years
  • 2,400 tonnes of structural steel has made in the UK and delivered to the south portal of the Chiltern tunnel by Notts-based fabricators, Caunton Engineering. The steelwork will be used in the temporary pre-cast factories that will create the tunnel wall segments and the nearby Colne Valley Viaduct
  • 87,000 tonnes of CO2 has been designed out of Curzon Street Station, resulting in the station achieving net zero carbon emissions from regulated energy consumption and a range of technologies to generate energy from renewable sources
  • 500 jobs are set to be created after PORR UK won the contract to deliver HS2’s high-performance modular track system. The high-tech ‘slab track’ will be manufactured at a new facility in Somerset.