The UK Government has published a hybrid bill that includes the powers necessary to construct and operate phase one of High-Speed 2 (HS2) railway line between London and the west midlands.
HS2 will connect eight of the ten major cities in the UK and will particularly benefit the midlands and the north.
Construction of the line from London to Birmingham is expected to begin between 2016 and 2017, with the line estimated to be operational in 2026. The new line is vital to relieve capacity requirements on the other main rail routes into London.
UK Transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlin said: "HS2 is the most ambitious and important infrastructure project in the UK since we built the M25 30 years ago, and in 30 more it will be just as integral a part of the nation’s prosperity.
"The bill will give us the powers we need to get the railway built and start delivering the extra room on our railways that this country so desperately needs."
The bill will also provide an opportunity for opponents to petition Parliament, both for and against the proposals.
Professional services firm KPMG estimates that HS2 will generate around £15bn of economic benefits per year when fully operational.
The British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) director general John Longworth said: "HS2 simply must be built if we are to avoid crippling delays, stifling carriage conditions and weekend chaos that conventional upgrades will bring."
As well as the bill, the government will also release the environmental statement for phase one of the scheme.
Image: HS2 will connect eight out of 10 major cities in the UK. Photo: Credit of gov.uk.