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U.K. to Study Benefits to Scotland From High-Speed Rail

Nov. 1 (Bloomberg) -- HS2 Ltd., the company building a high-speed rail line from London to the north of England, has been ordered to study ways of improving journey times to Scotland, U.K. Transport Minister Susan Kramer said.

The 50 billion-pound ($80 billion) line, which will connect London to Manchester, Birmingham and Leeds, can benefit Scotland if connections to existing lines to the north are properly managed, Kramer said today.

“Scotland will already benefit from day one with reduced journey times to and from London, and once the full network is open these times will be reduced by up to an hour,” Kramer said in an e-mailed statement. “We want to see if more can be done and so we are commissioning this study.”

Lawmakers in the House of Commons yesterday voted through the latest stage of the legislation needed for the line to be built, giving the government powers to pay for property purchases, surveys and compensation for affected homeowners.

HS2 trains are intended to reach speeds as high as 225 miles (362 kilometers) an hour on the proposed 335 miles of track from London to the northern cities.

To contact the reporter on this story: Thomas Penny in London at tpenny@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: James Hertling at jhertling@bloomberg.net

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