Work by independent experts, following cost comparisons presented to the Select Committee, last Octonber, suggests that Phase 1 costs could be as much as €54B.
Lord Berkeley has previously warned that, far from freeing existing rail capacity for more freight paths, HS2 could lead to a “capacity crunch” on parts of the system, particularly in the North and Midlands, due to bad design.
The latest government costing for phase 1 is £24.3B including contingency work and the overall funding envelope (phases 1, 2a and 2b, and rolling stock) is £55.7B. However, on the basis of accurate costings, the costs to completion could rise to a ruinous £100B.
The matter will be debated again in the Lords at Report Stage on Tuesday, 24th January.