They really do seem to be serious about building that new chunk of high-speed train track in the UK, with today seeing a key component of the line revealed in the form of concept images of what the 3.4km Colne Valley viaduct might look like.
The images released by HS2 Ltd were created by architect Martin Knight with input from the Colne Valley Regional Park Panel and HS2's own design team, and are intended to start off an exploration of how this sensitive piece of countryside can be considerately scythed in half by a massive new train line.
One of the key aims in the design brief is to go for a "well proportioned and elegant" look, which these images do indeed manage to portray; although after 20 years there's a chance that concrete could be as grey and grim as a 1960s motorway flyover, and who's going to be in charge of cleaning the bat-friendly transparent noise-reduction barriers that are currently envisioned?
The Colne Valley Regional Park Panel seems to approve of this first step at least, with chair Jim Barclay saying: "The Colne Valley Panel which is drawn from local stakeholders, is very pleased to have been consulted and through a series of workshops, Panel Members have been able to understand the design principles for the viaduct. The Colne Valley Regional Park Panel looks forward to further engagement with HS2 and Align over the actual viaduct design." [GOV]