HS2 scraps Ealing bridge demolition plan for tunnelling

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Media caption,

The route will now go through a tunnel under Ealing

The HS2 rail project remains a contentious and controversial plan which splits opinion. But there are signs that the project is changing.

The problem with HS2 for Ealing, in west London, was the line followed the route of the London Underground Central Line.

This meant 18 road bridges - including the Hangar Lane gyratory- would have to have been knocked down.

That would have caused massive disruption.

Wider implications

Now HS2 say they have listened to residents, campaigners and Ealing Council and they believe tunnelling the section between Northolt and North Acton is a better option.

It means most of London will be tunnelled for HS2 until it gets to Ickenham in the borough of Hillingdon.

Last week the plans for Euston station, where the service will terminate, were drastically scaled back and now there are big changes for the Northolt corridor.

This is undoubtedly a victory for local campaigners in North Acton and Ealing. HS2 will say they are taking on board local opinion.

The wider implications are that groups right along the line will now think they can get changes and more mitigation.

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