HS2: Get a move on, prime minister

first_imgTo continue enjoying Building.co.uk, sign up for free guest accessExisting subscriber? LOGIN Subscribe now for unlimited access Subscribe to Building today and you will benefit from:Unlimited access to all stories including expert analysis and comment from industry leadersOur league tables, cost models and economics dataOur online archive of over 10,000 articlesBuilding magazine digital editionsBuilding magazine print editionsPrinted/digital supplementsSubscribe now for unlimited access.View our subscription options and join our community Stay at the forefront of thought leadership with news and analysis from award-winning journalists. Enjoy company features, CEO interviews, architectural reviews, technical project know-how and the latest innovations.Limited access to building.co.ukBreaking industry news as it happensBreaking, daily and weekly e-newsletters Get your free guest access  SIGN UP TODAYlast_img read more

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Float-out eases Dutch capacity crunch

first_imgNETHERLANDS Railways has a problem. It has become a victim of its own success. Such is the growth in passenger traffic that NS Reizigers has had to adopt a number of tactics to get more seats on its trains. One important strand is refurbishment of the 1964-built four-car ’Plan T’ EMUs.NS Materieel’s Revisiebedrijf Haarlem has begun a programme which will see all 31 of these EMUs given updated interiors, with upholstered seating and diffused lighting. The work should allow the trains to give another eight years of useful service.The opportunity is being taken to maximise the use of space, and redesign problem areas to ease cleaning and minimise the risk of vandalism. As built, the Plan T stock included a guard’s compartment and catering kitchen. These have been unused since about 1990, but as the units pass through Haarlem works, these areas will be stripped out and extra seating fitted, providing 34 more seats per train.NS is also putting into service 80 former-SNCB inter-city coaches, and 25 Plan W coaches which NS had stored out of use, over and above fleet expansion already planned (RG 11.97 p754). As well as providing a further 8000 seats to relieve short-term overcrowding, they will help cover for other stock being refurbished, including 316 coaches from the NS Intercity fleet built in the early 1980s. These are to be provided with new seating, air-conditioning and disabled facilities, based on the long-running IC+ development (RG 8.95 PP p8).Longer-term plans revealed on March 31 include purchase of another 128 double-deck Regiorunner EMU vehicles (RG 5.94 p285). These will be used to strengthen present three-car sets to four, and four-car units up to six. They will also be designed with operation at 25 kV AC in mind for future use on the high-speed lines and other routes should conversion go ahead.CAPTION: A driving trailer from the second set was ’floated out’ by NS Materieel’s Haarlem works on March 31 for inspection by invited guestsCAPTION: The first completed unit re-entered service towards the end of MarchCAPTION: First Class (left) has blue upholstered seating with a glass partition between the smoking and non-smoking areas. The Second Class area (right), shows the new finishes on both the floor and wallslast_img read more

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O’Neil To Miss ‘Three To Four Weeks’

first_imgThe midfielder hobbled out of City’s 2-0 defeat at Brentford on Saturday with the injury.Lee Johnson’s side have only seven games left of the season, which concludes on Sunday, May 7th against Birmingham City at Ashton Gate.The head coach told bcfc.co.uk: “Gary has had the injury scanned and it’s shown up a grade two tear of his hamstring.“He’s going to miss three to four weeks, so we may just get him back for the final two games of the season.”last_img

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Week 12 NFL picks straight up: Seahawks beat Panthers; Steelers escape Broncos

first_imgThis space was originally reserved to counter the cynics and naysayers who claimed that after the Monday night Rams-Chiefs unprecedented shootout, the video-game, scoreboard-short-circuiting era of the NFL was upon us, 54-51 games were about to become the norm, and defense would go the way of leather helmets.Nonsense, the counter-argument was going to be, there aren’t that many quarterbacks or offenses (or both) capable of piling up numbers like that. For goodness sake, Blake Bortles is facing Josh Allen this week, and one team is pondering a choice between Ryan Fitzpatrick and Jameis Winston. Then came a better look at the Week 12 games.There’s Tom Brady, and Ben Roethlisberger, and Philip Rivers, and Andrew Luck, and Aaron Rodgers, and Kirk Cousins, and Russell Wilson, and Cam Newton, and Deshaun Watson. That’s just Sunday and Monday — Drew Brees and Matt Ryan face each other Thanksgiving night. Wilson and Newton play each other this weekend, as do Rodgers and Cousins. And even though Allen was the butt of an above joke, he’s one of possibly five rookie first-round picks starting this week (if Sam Darnold is healthy).So, the cynics and naysayers might have a point.MORE NFL PREDICTIONS:Week 12 NFL picks against the spreadWeek 12 NFL picks, predictions(All times ET)New England Patriots (7-3) at New York Jets (3-7)Sunday, 1 p.m., CBSBoth teams come off their bye … but the Patriots come back with Brady and Rob Gronkowski rested, while the Jets may or may not have Darnold back. This series gets way more feisty than one this lopsided should, so since both teams are headed in opposite directions, this will probably be uncomfortably close. In the Patriots’ favor (as if they need the motivation): The Chiefs took a step back toward them Monday, and the Patriots have the head-to-head tiebreaker.Prediction: Patriots, 23-20Seattle Seahawks (5-5) at Carolina Panthers (6-4)Sunday, 1 p.m., FoxThis is about where the Seahawks were expected to be in their transition, but they wouldn’t even be here if Wilson were not playing the way he is. That was on display in a crucial NFC playoff-contender showdown with the Packers last week. The Panthers and Cam Newton should feel fine with going for the win last week in Detroit; they should feel less good about a defense that is extremely ordinary this season, particularly last week against a flailing Lions team.Prediction: Seahawks, 30-26 New York Giants (3-7) at Philadelphia Eagles (4-6)Sunday, 1 p.m., FoxIf the Giants are really back, this is how they can prove it, and against whom they can prove it. The Eagles are on the ropes and in position for a knockout punch. Whether the Giants and their suddenly awakened offense — they’re protecting Eli Manning way better now, finally — can do it is another story. Odd how the complaints about Odell Beckham being toxic and a distraction have dropped dramatically during their two-game win streak. The Eagles are capable of putting tremendous pressure on Manning and covering for their other defensive weaknesses. This is the week for them to realize it.Prediction: Eagles, 28-20Cleveland Browns (3-6-1) at Cincinnati Bengals (5-5)Sunday, 1 p.m., CBSThe Browns don’t hit the bye week on a high very often, and they have a window to harness that positive energy this week. Their AFC North, intra-state rival has now wasted a 4-1 start that had the Bengals looking back at the Steelers, and they just lost to a mobile rookie in his first NFL start. The Bengals’ beleaguered defense couldn’t handle Lamar Jackson, so it stands to reason that Baker Mayfield will give them fits. There are chances at wins down the stretch for the Browns, and this is their first.Prediction: Browns, 27-22San Francisco 49ers (2-8) at Tampa Bay Buccaneers (3-8)Sunday, 1 p.m., FoxThe Buccaneers’ games are starting to all look the same, no matter who’s at quarterback, so the reported switch back to Jameis Winston is likely irrelevant. The Bucs lead the NFL in interceptions by a wide margin (23, seven more than any other team). The 49ers are going through growing pains, but their two games before their bye gave them something on which to build. Kyle Shanahan vs. Dirk Koetter might be the mismatch that decides this more than any other.Prediction: 49ers, 33-24Jacksonville Jaguars (3-7) at Buffalo Bills (3-7)Sunday, 1 p.m., CBSThe Bills get their franchise quarterback back in Josh Allen after four games out. He won’t get the break Matt Barkley had in their pre-bye game — instead of the Jets, he faces the Jaguars’ defense. The Jaguars’ offense still has to overcome its own quarterback, Blake Bortles, who was not trusted by his play-callers to hold a 16-0 lead on the Steelers. Both teams have forfeited the luxury of looking at the other as “beatable.”Prediction: Jaguars, 20-10Oakland Raiders (2-8) at Baltimore Ravens (5-5)Sunday, 1 p.m., CBSThe Ravens’ defense is in position to douse the brief euphoria of last week’s success by the Raiders and Derek Carr against the Cardinals. Ironically, that defense got a boost from Lamar Jackson and the rest of the rushing game in their win over Cincinnati, and if the Raiders are no better at navigating what Jackson can do than the Bengals were, then the Raiders will be in big trouble. The Ravens have no more margin for error in the division and wild-card races.Prediction: Ravens, 26-20Arizona Cardinals (2-8) at Los Angeles Chargers (7-3)Sunday, 4:05 p.m., FoxKeenan Allen caught heat for not properly giving the Broncos credit for their win over the Chargers last week, yet he had a point: It was only the second time this season the Chargers lost in the turnover margin, and they dropped both games. Philip Rivers’ touchdown-to-interception ratio going into the game was 21:4, but he threw two last week. All of that to say that against the Cardinals, the Chargers should just be sure not to beat themselves.Prediction: Chargers, 31-16 Monday, 8:15 p.m., ESPNIt won’t be the anti-Rams-Chiefs game that many predicted, partly tongue-in-cheek. The Texans, on a seven-game winning streak, are capable of putting up numbers, even on a solid defense like that of Tennessee. DeAndre Hopkins should not be overlooked when All-Pro picks are made, and they’re going to get plenty out of Demaryiuis Thomas before season’s end. Marcus Mariota’s availability was still in question at midweek. If anything deflates the likelihood of a score-a-palooza, it’s that.Prediction: Texans, 30-21 Pittsburgh Steelers (7-2-1) at Denver Broncos (4-6)Sunday, 4:25 p.m., CBSThe Broncos’ win over the Chargers was their sixth game this season decided by four points or fewer, and they’re 3-3. For all their faults, they have a shot in close games, so things are pretty simple against the Steelers. Pittsburgh clearly needed a wake-up call, and the Jaguars provided it, yet the Steelers still survived it. They need to stay away this week, too.Prediction: Steelers, 27-25Miami Dolphins (5-5) at Indianapolis Colts (5-5)Sunday, 4:25 p.m., CBSThese don’t look like teams with identical records; the Colts have gotten their acts together in a hurry, on both sides of the ball, and the Dolphins’ 3-0 start has been proven to be a complete mirage. It still looks like Brock Osweiler at quarterback this week. The one comeback competing with Andrew Luck’s as the most impressive in the NFL is that of the Colts’ offensive line, which had been atrocious for years. None of that bodes well for the disappearing Dolphins.Prediction: Colts, 34-16Green Bay Packers (4-5-1) at Minnesota Vikings (5-4-1)Sunday, 8:20 p.m., NBCIt’s a rematch of the Week 2 tie that, for multiple reasons (awful kicking, the cheesy Clay Matthews roughing-the-passer flag), should not have been a tie. That game now serves as a reminder of how average and underwhelming both teams have been despite two of the higher-profile (and well-paid) quarterbacks in the league. The loser will start to lose sight of playoff contention entering December, so there’s plenty on the line.Prediction: Packers, 24-22Tennessee Titans (5-5) at Houston Texans (7-3)last_img read more

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