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Lichfield’s MP has questioned why more time wasn’t taken to decide the route for HS2.
Michael Fabricant’s comments came after the Government confirmed it would delay the decision over whether to build another airport runway in the south-east to ensure the outcome was correct.
The Conservative MP said that applying the same logic to the controversial high speed rail route could have made the line “cheaper and less environmentally damaging”.
Transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlin replied: “The HS2 route has undergone considerable improvement, much of which my right honourable friend has campaigned for, and he has got his own way on what he wanted in his constituency.”
The controversial route will run through parts of Lichfield and the surrounding villages.
But local campaigning has seen a change to the proposals, meaning HS2 will no longer run over the A38.
Mr Fabricant said: “We have indeed seen major improvements to the route in Lichfield, but the overall route still doesn’t link with the continent or even Heathrow airport.
“By not using existing transport corridors, it is environmentally damaging as it crashes across unspoiled countryside and is at least £8billion more expensive than it need be because of the extra tunnelling required.”