Patrick McLoughlin has said HS2 is the solution for the "clogged arteries of our transport system."
In a speech today the Transport Secretary said: "The reason we need HS2 isn't for its speed, though speed is an obvious benefit."
"HS2 will allow you to get from Birmingham to Leeds in 57 minutes.
"The main reason we need HS2 is the heart bypass for the clogged arteries of our transport system.
"It will lift the burden from our overcrowded system."
More top news
Wolverhampton-born One Direction star Liam Payne has hit back at suggestions he is drinking heavily.
BT has announced the West Midlands is to benefit from plans to create a thousand apprenticeships and graduate jobs in the UK.
The owners of what some people claim to be the 'Welsh Holy Grail' are offering a cash reward for the ancient artefact's safe return.