In the broadband world lots of people have complained that the money currently allocated to the HS2 rail project providing a faster rail link between London and Birmingham could finance full FTTH for every property in the UK it would appear that the politicians have finally noticed.
At the weekend The Telegraph reported that there are plans underway to run fibre optic cabling along the route, and possibly other utilities such as water and electricity.
"HS2 is far more than a new railway line — it is a national infrastructure project that will bring places and people closer together while creating jobs and driving growth.
Construction of HS2 gives us the perfect opportunity to explore how we can make it easier for even more people to benefit from ultra-fast broadband — and potentially deliver improvements to the provision of other utility services, including water and electricity."Simon Burns, Minister of State for Transport
Building a £33bn rail line is a very expensive way of installing a new fibre backbone that home owners can benefit from, something like 170,000 homes are expected to be impacted by the building of the rail link. Many of the towns that are skirted around will already have full fibre connectivity available as of Spring 2013, and there are numerous operators with fibre links already running between Birmingham and London. Another aspect possibly overlooked by the minister is that sections of the line that go through tunnels will not benefit the surrounding area with regard to fibre optic backbone.
Projects like HS2 potentially represent a way to keep traditional industries like the construction industry busy and employing people for some years, but as more people use the Internet for video conferences and remote working the need to commute or travel to meetings is decreasing every year and by 2026 the 30 year old executives will have known nothing but an Internet connected world and work to the philosophy that any time spent travelling to a meeting is time wasted unless meeting a new customer for the first time.