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North to Elizabetha

The original 1962 article, published in The Economist, making the case for a new capital

By Alastair Burnet   December 2002

What has the south of Britain got that the north really wants? Short answer: the economic and social stimulus of a London. What has the south got that it would be well rid of? Short answer: the inefficiency of a congested central London. The arguments for reinvigorating the north are only too well known to every politician and economist. The chief arguments for decongesting the southeast are that a prolonged and unregulated influx means a high cost in road building and traffic jams; excessive journeys to work; and the effect of soaring urban land values on the provision of housing…

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