Johnson has been asked to “give HS2 east the green light to move to the delivery and implementation stage”, in a joint letter from Leeds Council’s Labour leader, James Lewis, and Ben Bradley, Conservative MP for Mansfield.
Work is well under way on the first phase of the high-speed rail project, which is expected to cost more than £100bn, and phase 2a was approved by Parliament earlier this year. But phase 2b, which will see a western line link Crewe and Manchester and an eastern line link West Midlands to Leeds, is still awaiting approval.
There were concerns the eastern line, which is due to open between 2036 and 2040, would be scrapped after the National Infrastructure Commission said investment in local rail projects should be upgraded. But in May, Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said that the Government was committed to building it.
The Infrastructure and Projects Authority (IPA) has rated the scheme as red, the highest risk warning available to it.
The IPA assesses the likelihood of large schemes fulfilling their objectives on time and in budget and a red rating means the experts believe that “successful delivery of the project appears to be unachievable”.
Currently, the HS2 route through Leeds cuts through several housing estates and cuts across motorways which will cause years of disruption and delays for demolition and construction.
This is how Leeds will be affected, according to HS2's own documents, if the route goes ahead as originally planned.