U.K. Prime Minister Theresa May said she backs the construction of a high-speed rail line from London to northern England, dismissing doubts that her new government might abandon the project following the vote to leave the European Union.
May gave the commitment in a letter to the leader of Camden Council in north London. Camden is the site for the London terminus of the line, Euston Station, and opposes the project, known as High Speed 2. The council leader, Sarah Hayward, wrote to May in July, when she was running to succeed David Cameron as Conservative Party leader and prime minister, to ask her to clarify her position in light of the Brexit vote.
“I am fully committed to High Speed 2,” May said in her response, dated Aug. 9 and published Tuesday on Camden’s website. “It is essential that our country continues to invest in infrastructure projects like HS2, which will provide vital capacity for rail passengers and our transport system, as well as a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to rebalance our country’s economy.”
The 56 billion-pound ($73 billion) project is intended to link London with Manchester and Leeds in northern England via Birmingham in the Midlands.