New compensation proposals for homeowners living near HS2 are being consulted on by the government.
The Alternative Cash Offer would give householders living within 120 metres of the line (such as Cotswolds Way in Calvert) and who don’t want to sell their home to the government 10% of their home’s value (capped at between £30,000 and £100,000).
It would start by the end of this year and last until one year after the trains start running.
Meanwhile, the Homeowner Payment Scheme would give owner-occupiers living between 120 and 300 metres of the line (such as northern parts of Calvert, Twyford and Turweston) a one-off cash payment.
Those between 120 and 180 metres of the centre of the line of the railway would receive £22,500; between 180 and 240 metres the sum would be £15,000 and for those between 240 metres and 300 metres, £7,500.
This scheme would launch as soon as possible after Royal Assent to the hybrid Bill.
Transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlin said: “HS2 is an exceptional scheme that justifies an exceptional support for people living near the line. It is only right that those people are properly looked after.
“The compensation and assistance package I announced in April is already enabling us to help people more.
“I am now asking for further views on two supplementary cash payments which provide an incentive for property owners to remain in their community and enable early sharing of the benefits of the railway.
“HS2 will transform many people’s lives for the better, but where its impacts are less positive we are doing all we can to provide the right help.”
In April, the government launched an express purchase scheme for owner-occupiers of properties closest to the line, in the area known as the ‘surface safeguarded area’ (generally within 60 metres from the proposed line).
Under this scheme, the government is buying properties at the full unblighted market value, plus 10% (up to £47,000) and reasonable moving expenses, including stamp duty.
A ‘rent-back’ option has also been made available which will mean that those people who want to sell their properties but carry on living where they are, may be able to do so.
The exceptional hardship scheme continues to be available for those who have an urgent need to sell their home but are unable to do so because of HS2.
The government has already bought 140 properties at a cost of around £83m from owner-occupiers living near the route.
This is under the discretionary exceptional hardship scheme for people with a pressing need to sell.
In April the government also announced its intention to replace the exceptional hardship scheme with a need to sell scheme and consider applications to buy properties at full unblighted market value from owner-occupiers who have a compelling need to sell, such as job relocation or ill health, but who are unable to do so because of plans to build HS2.
This scheme does not have a boundary.
The government hopes to have this scheme available in urban and rural areas by the end of 2014 when it will replace the exceptional hardship scheme.
The consultation closes on September 30 2014.