Business groups have welcomed plans to build a high-speed rail line between London, Leeds and Manchester - even though it stops short of the North East.
The Confederation of British Industry (CBI) and the North East Chamber of Commerce (NECC) said the line was "essential" to the region's future.
The high-speed line will end at Leeds, but high-speed trains will continue north to Newcastle. Journey times to the capital would reduce from nearly three hours, to two hours and 18 minutes.
A journey to Birmingham would take two hours and seven minutes, down from more than three hours.
The line would be open by 2033.
The CBI and NECC have today published their Transport Priorities for the North East. It calls for help in securing a trans-Atlantic air route and upgrades to the A1 and A19, in addition to high-speed rail.