The HS2 is a proposed new £43bn rail network for the UK, which will connect London, Birmingham, Leeds and Manchester in a two-phase project.
The UK Government plans to invest £9.4bn in overhead electrification and a brief has been set to maximise efficiency and minimise obtrusiveness.
Architects, engineers and designers have submitted designs as part of an RIBA competition for gantry and cantilever structures, which will be used for the new network.
The RIBA says it received 62 entries from 14 countries before a judging panel met in February to decide on a shortlist.
The project is at this stage an ideas competition. An exhibition in the Great Hall at The national Railway Museum in York runs until 12 May where maquettes of the ten shortlisted designs are on display.
Ideas include Tuning Fork by Grimshaw which proposes ‘an elegant system’ suited to natural and urban environments. The design combines a ‘bsespoke sculptural mast’ with standard electrification components.
Responsive Overhead Line Structures by PWA proposes to be ‘expressive, awe-inspiring, economic and practical’ with its tapering mast.
Public consultation at the exhibition and online [http://www.ribacompetitions.com/ols/shortlisted.html] will help judges and a consortium including the Department of Transport and HS2 ltd decide on four designs to be selected for further development.
There will be £150,000 made available for each of the four design teams to undertake technical and mathematical modeling and consider the best route to market.