Trains transporting HS2 waste to cut carbon emissions

Press release 15/07/2021 10:00 CET

Our Skanska Costain STRABAG JV, working for HS2, has begun transporting thousands of tonnes of waste from the project by train.

The new logistics hub in Willesden will take one million HGVs off the roads.

More than a thousand tonnes of HS2 construction works spoil have been transported by train, paving the way to removing a million HGVs from the roads. It will reduce pressure on the country’s roads and impact on the environment.  

The train left the new HS2 logistics hub in Willesden late last month carrying 1,470 tonnes of spoil to Barrington in Cambridgeshire, where it will be reused in a disused quarry for a new housing development. The logistics hub has been brought into use by our Skanska Costain STRABAG JV as the main works contractor for HS2, building the HS2 tunnels through London 

The hub will also be used by other London contractors, Balfour Beatty VINCI SYSTRA JV (BBVS JV) and Mace Dragados JV (MD JV) who are constructing HS2’s Old Oak Common and Euston stations respectively. The site will become the ‘beating heart’ of HS2’s construction activity in southern part of the country. 

During the lifecycle of HS2, it is expected that as many as seven freight trains will leave the logistics hub in Willesden every day, transporting spoil and removing a million heavy goods vehicles from the roads in the London area alone in the process. A train will also arrive at the hub every day, bringing in construction materials, including concrete segments for use in constructing HS2’s London tunnels.  

Skanska Costain STRABAG’s Managing Director, James Richardson, said: This is an exciting moment for the project, seeing the start of a million vehicles being taken off the road. Removing spoil by rail has significant benefits and will greatly reduce vehicle movements on local roads. The logistics hub will be pivotal in managing all sites in the Old Oak and Park Royal development area and will see coordination and collaboration across all delivery partners in the area.”  

The first train was operated by GB Railfreight, and the start of the logistics service is the result of meticulous planning between HS2, Network Rail, the Skanska Costain STRABAG JV and our supply chain. 

HS2’s Client Director, Malcolm Codling, said: “HS2 is committed to improving environmental standards in construction and the departure of the first logistics train from Willesden is just one of the many measures we are taking to do that. The team working at the logistics hub will be coordinating rail freight movements that will remove one million HGVs off the roads, significantly reducing the project’s environmental impact.” 

Another measure designed to reduce impact on local roads in the areas will be the installation of a conveyor system to remove spoil from the construction of Old Oak Common station and transport it to the Willesden logistics hub. Plans for the system are being developed and it is due be installed and operational by spring 2022.