MPs have given their approval to HS2 in the Commons tonight - but how did your MP vote?
Towns and cities in the East could be among the worst affected by HS2, new figures have revealed.
The Prime Minister and Transport Secretary have launched what they refer to as a "fightback" over the HS2 high-speed rail project.
A major Bill to legislate for the building of the controversial High Speed 2 rail link has been formally presented to Parliament.
The High Speed Rail (London - West Midlands) Bill was given its formal first reading by MPs in a very brief appearance where a Commons clerk read out the title of the Bill.
Bills are not debated at first reading. A key debate and vote on the principle of the legislation will be held in the coming months.
The HS2 Hybrid Bill that is to go before Parliament will give details on how the first phase of the high speed rail project should progress.
The High Speed Rail (London - West Midlands) Bill will provide government powers to allow the construction and operation of the railway.
It will outline powers to:
- build and maintain the first phase of HS2 and its associated works, including secure planning permission for the works;
- compulsorily acquire interests in the land required;
- affect or change rights of way, including the stopping-up or diversion of highways and waterways (permanently or temporarily);
- modify infrastructure belonging to statutory undertakers (e.g. utility companies);
- carry out protective works to buildings and third-party infrastructure.
The publication of the Bill for phase one of the HS2 plan marks a significant milestone in the high speed rail project. Once Royal Assent has been achieved, it is expected that construction of the line from London to Birmingham will begin in 2016/2017 allowing the line to open in 2026.
Transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlin said the HS2 scheme was the 'most ambitious' infrastructure plan since the building of the M25 motorway around London.
– Transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlin
HS2 is the most ambitious and important infrastructure project in the UK since we built the M25 30 years ago, and in 30 more it will be just as integral a part of the nation's prosperity.
The Bill will give us the powers we need to get the railway built and start delivering the extra room on our railways that this country so desperately needs. It will also start the process of rebalancing the economy and bringing our great cities closer together.
That is why the Bill is so important - it marks the move from aspiration to delivery. Now is the time to be bold and ensure HS2 becomes a reality.
The future of Britain's high speed rail network enters a key phase of its development when a HS2 hybrid Bill goes before Parliament later today.
As part of the process, opponents of the £50 billion HS2 scheme will have the chance to petition Parliament and have their case heard by a committee of MPs.
The Government has also published an "environmental statement" for the London-Birmingham phase one of the scheme.
Opponents of the £50 billion HS2 high-speed rail project are set to demonstrate in Westminster tomorrow as an HS2 Hybrid Bill begins its passage through Parliament.
The protest is being organised by the Stop HS2 group with demonstrators expected to come from as far away at Cheshire and Yorkshire.
A "paving" bill - officially called the High Speed (Preparation) Bill - received royal assent last week and has kick-started the legislation that supporters hope will see a new high-speed line running through Tory heartlands in the Chilterns from London to Birmingham by 2026.
The Prime Minister has met leaders from cities up and down the country, who pledged to back the planned high speed rail link from London. He held a meeting at Downing Street to promote the benefits of the proposed HS2 link between the capital and the North.
But a few miles away in Camden, a report warned the new line could cost thousands of jobs, and put the world famous market at risk. Ria Chatterjee explains.
The economic benefits of HS2 high-speed rail will be discussed by MPs today.
The Treasury Select Committee will look into the issue after a recent report by the scheme's promoters revealed they won't be as great as first predicted.
Government legislation to build a controversial high speed railway line linking London to the north of England cleared the House of Commons tonight.
MPs voted by 350 to 34 to approve the High Speed Rail (Preparation) Bill, which will allow the Government to spend money planning the route in detail and buying up property from residents and businesses along the proposed track.
There had been fears Labour could oppose the Bill. With a number of Tory MPs expected to be amongst those voting against the High Speed 2 rail line, there were fears the project could have been halted.
But the Bill passed after being overwhelmingly approved by MPs. It will now go to the House of Lords for further scrutiny by peers.