Going to war with France has been a National hobby for many hundreds of years, up to the start of the twentieth century. It’s strange how a one time sworn enemy can become a trusted trading partner, (ignoring the supply of Exocet missiles into the Falklands).
We even have connected the two countries with the channel tunnel. Our network of roads and rail has required more expansion as the years progress.
Britain has the know how to create the best engineering projects in the world and yet we dream up the HS2 program – the new route for the High Speed Train. Now I know that every man and his dog, apart from a few owners of cottages in the way, agrees with the project. But I still say that the whole project is a bag of knackers.
Stand back for a minute and think out of the box. The route is marketed as leveling out the North South divide but it misses Derby and Nottingham but will dump people in the middle.
MeadowHall shopping centre is honoured as it gets a drop off point whilst Sheffield misses out. Leeds wins as the planners actually hit a city, bang in the center.
If China was to build a similar project, and it has, it wouldn’t announce it. The project would be quietly completed in a tenth of the time. That’s because it is not out of the ordinary. Yes the trains are reasonably okay, as far as trains go, but the project is so Victorian – same rails, old signalling, same dangers.
Britain is a small island that punches above its weight. We can afford to be dramatic and create a project that stuns the world and in turn generates export skills and attracts international business to actually invest in Britain.
The idea of a massive infrastructure project is good, but not just for the sake of it. Does anyone really believe that the trains will run at 225 miles per hour? One leaf on the line and the train’s buggered. We life in a maritime climate which causes havoc with transport. The cost of the project is estimated at £32 Billion but history teaches us that it will end up costing over £70 Billion.
The answer to resolving our transport problems is so simple that it is baffling as to why the authorities have not thought this project through. They must be the same people that think our cities are best off having trams knocking over cyclists and cyclists running over pedestrians.
We do not need to disrupt our infrastructure. We do not need to disfigure our countryside or destroy communities. We need a next generation transport system not a Victorian one. Forget trains as they are expensive, dangerous and antiquated. Do you know how little effort it would take to derail a train travelling over 100 mph? – one spanner in one mad terrorists hand.
Also, we do not need to choose which cities should benefit – we should link them all. Nor should we settle at a paltry 250 mph – why not 1,000 mph – why not?
When we achieve speeds of 1,000 mph plus, we can spread workloads across all corners of the UK and regenerate blighted areas. A commuter can live in the Highlands of Scotland and be in the City within a lunch break.
It is not sensible to wait for a few hours to get onto an aeroplane then fly up into the air and then back down again when we can keep our feet firmly on the ground and travel three times faster than a plane with no waiting time. And why should UK citizens have to pay to use the system? – it should be free.
We need to break the rules. If we don’t, we’ll sink through the lack of competitive leverage. Free, instant transport is not Star Trek magic. It is a reality waiting to happen.
So how would it work? Think of an Amazonian blowpipe that is used by tribal Indians and shoots out poison darts in the hunting of animals. When the dart is in the pipe it is predictable.
The same predictability can be used in a new transport system based on huge seamless tubes that would network to every main city in the UK, followed by further expansion to every town and then to every village.
Large gyroscopic pods would be moved by a combination of compressed air and magnets with the built in impossibility of collision that enables the tubes to be 75 percent full of pods at any one time. The system is already working on a small scale – we just need to think bigger and smarter and dare to be different.
The same qualities are needed by directors in 2013 as market forces conspire to constrict investment and growth as a direct result of the lack of major project investment. When we get a noticeable dip in National earnings as a result of the Olympics, we know that something is really wrong.
Many companies are facing winding up petitions which in turn weakens the economy. Most directors have heard of Company Voluntary Arrangements because the large businesses are using them as a management tool, such as Travelodge.
The business landscape is changing because the level of business is reducing and that’s why we need major infrastructure projects, but not ones that become white elephants.