Residents living in Solihull's rural heartlands claim that the HS2 rail link will permanently cut their communities in two.
Speaking this month, campaigners described their fears that the line risked weakening the historic ties between the neighbouring villages of Berkswell and Balsall Common.
There is also widespread concern that the procession of large vehicles during the construction work will pile fresh pressure on roads which locals argue are already struggling to cope.
Both Solihull Council and HS2 Ltd have said work continues to minimise the disruption to the transport network.
Last week, the Local Democracy Reporting Service visited the area, slap-bang in the middle of the Meriden Gap, to speak to some of those living on the front-line of the development.
"It will be cutting roads, cutting footpaths, but also cutting through the villages," said Richard Lloyd, who is a parish councillor for both Balsall and Berkswell.
"You can tell from the phrase 'other side of the tracks' that railways have always formed a barrier."
Sheila Cooper, who has lived in Berkswell for more than 20 years, shared the concerns that the development would lead to a "physical separation".
"Many of the facilities are used by both communities," she said, rattling off the links which have been established between schools and community groups.
Both Richard and Sheila have been outspoken critics of the HS2 plan since details of the scheme first started to emerge almost a decade ago.
Work is set to begin in earnest in the coming months and while Richard has described this as the moment "all hell will break loose," the pair admit that the public response at the minute is somewhat muted.
When the proposed route for the Birmingham-London line was published in 2010, some anxious residents had hurried to put their homes on the market. Now however, with the diggers on the horizon, the village is surprisingly quiet.
"It's people being people," said Sheila. "They have got no interest until it affects them."
One of the main bones of contention, discussed at a recent Solihull Council meeting, is how construction traffic will negotiate an area with a number of existing pinch points and narrow country lanes.
At the same session, HS2 Ltd had set out proposals to take lorries along Hallmeadow Road.
Some villagers have pointed out that the kerbside is already cluttered with vehicles who use the street to park because there is no room left at nearby Berkswell Station.
"You see so many cars using this road because there aren't enough spaces at the station," said Richard, who has lived in Balsall Common for almost 35 years.
And there are also concerns about congestion on the wider road network. It is approaching 4pm and Sheila points to the cars queueing along the Kenilworth Road.
"There is already so much traffic in this area and if you throw HGVs into the mix."
The fact that work could start on a major new link road - connecting Stoneleigh and Solihull - next year, has added to their feelings of apprehension.
Despite making a string of suggestions which they believe would have eased the burden on the surrounding area, the pair claim that warnings from the local community have gone unheeded.
"In my view we were treated as a nuisance, our evidence was [something] to be got over," said Sheila.
"Someone picked up a ruler and pencil in London and someone drew a line on the map."
At the council session back in July, HS2 Ltd insisted that more detail about their plans would begin to emerge now that key contracts were in place.
In a fresh statement this month, a HS2 spokesperson said: “As a result of working with the community and local authorities, we’ve put forward plans to Solihull Council to significantly reduce HS2 construction traffic passing through Balsall Common.
"This includes creating a temporary haul route off Hallmeadow Road into our main compound area around Beechwood Embankment. We are also looking at the impact on car parking in the area as part of the proposal.”
A Solihull Council spokesperson said: "We had a very good working relationship with HS2 throughout the planning phase and this continues during implementation.
"We are meeting with them and regional colleagues regularly to discuss the implications of the build on Solihull, in particular on the transport network. Our HS2 Implementation Advisory Group brings together the council, HS2, parish councils and other key stakeholders to consider issues like this.
“Through the Traffic Liaison Group we will coordinate activities to ensure disruption to motorists is minimised. And working with HS2 and its contractors, regional partners, plus key stakeholders within Solihull, we are developing a coordinated approach to communications so that residents, businesses and motorists can be kept informed of any works that affect them."
The local authority has also emphasised the work being done by the Urban Growth Company (UGC), which it has set up to maximise the economic opportunities that will be created by the project.
The next meeting of the HS2 Implementation Advisory Group will take place on October 4.