Adonis stresses importance of transport infrastructure in post-Brexit Britain

A 12-piece jigsaw of transport infrastructure needs to be in place by 2030 if London and Britain are to succeed once the UK leaves the European Union, according to national Infrastructure Commission (NIC) chairman Lord Adonis.

Adonis introduced his ‘Golden Arrow’ plan as he delivered a speech at the Guildhall in the City of London, entitled 'Never forget - Rome fell: What London needs to do to remain the world's greatest city'. Adonis claims the Golden Arrow model will transform the ability of people to live and work across the country by ensuring all the main cities are better connected. The NIC chairman believes the transport and social revolution will come from high-speed rail and not roads.

The construction and development of a third runway at Heathrow, Crossrail of the North, Crossrail 2, the Midlands Metro, extending the high-frequency London Overground and a new high-speed line linking Liverpool-Manchester-Leeds-Hull/York-Newcastle are all integral components in ensuring the Golden Arrow comes to fruition. 

Adonis delivered his speech with a clear warning about the consequences Brexit could have on the city of London. There was a comparison to the fall of Rome 240 years ago and Adonis was adamant a clear plan was needed to ensure London doesn’t follow a similar path in the coming years. The chairman described London and Britain at a “critical moment” when it could all start to go wrong. 

Adonis said: “In the wake of Brexit, and the collapse of 50 years of British foreign and trade policy, the whole strategic direction of Britain’s international and trade policy needs to be resolved. Whatever happens with Brexit, we need a big bold Gladstonian prospectus to tackle North-South divide, and ensure London’s success is linked to great cities of the north and midlands. Brexit, or no Brexit, Britain needs a plan. The Golden Arrow is that plan. It can, and must, be done by 2030. It will give Britain the most highly networked agglomeration of major cities close to each other of any country in the world.”

Adonis also made reference to the approach including Heathrow, Birmingham and Manchester airports. He used the talk to reiterate the need for a third runway at Heathrow with its connectivity said to be further radically improved with a combination of HS2.

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