Boris Johnson tells Camden voters: I am unconvinced on High Speed 2 rail link
London Mayor Boris Johnson declared he is still unconvinced by the High Speed 2 (HS2) rail link as he sought to woo Camden voters just days before the mayoral election.
The Conservative city hall incumbent insisted the government still had to “make the business case” for the controversial rail link, which tunnels underneath Primrose Hill and is set to have a new station in Euston.
The link threatens to wreak a decade of disruption to residents in Gloucester Avenue and Primrose Hill, and will condemn hundreds of homes to be bulldozed in Euston and Regent’s Park.
In a lively walkabout in Finchley Road on Tuesday afternoon (May 1), Mr Johnson said: “My view is very simple, the government has got to produce a good business case for HS2. �32billion is a lot of money to spend and the government has to put forward the business case for it.
“I want more mitigation for Londoners affected and to take a closer look at what is happening in Camden.
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“And if we are going to build HS2 we need to have Crossrail 2 to join up with it. I haven’t had sufficient answers from the government on any of these questions.”
He rebuffed his rival Ken Livingstone’s plans to re-route the link using existing lines from London, shrugging off the plan as “not high speed rail”.
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Mr Johnson also backed Conservative candidate for the Barnet and Camden London Assembly seat Brian Coleman.
The contest for the Barnet and Camden seat promises to be one of the closest fought in London, with pollster Survation putting Labour challenger Andrew Dismore just two points ahead of Tory incumbent Mr Coleman.
In a final stirring call to arms to Conservative activists in Camden, Mr Johnson said: “Do you want to go backwards to a high taxing, Finchley Road ignoring administration run by a semi reformed Bolshevik?
“We want to go forward with a sensible administration which invests in public transport?”
His words proved popular with his blue placard waving supporters and passers-by who gravitated towards the blonde bouffant politician.
Among them was black cab driver Nigel Chambers, who effusively pledged his vote to Mr Johnson.
Leaning against his taxi, Mr Chambers said: “I’m a cabbie through and through. Boris is straight down the line, what you see is what you get. I’m voting for him.”
Mr Johnson will discover tomorrow (Friday, May 4) if the rest of Camden agrees with him.