Latest Rail News

19.02.16

Centro to carry out Birmingham tram line extension safety checks

Birmingham’s tram extension has moved a step closer after permission was granted to carry out a series of safety checks.

In less time than the 13-week industry standard, Network Rail has granted a possession giving Centro, the body delivering the new tram network between Birmingham and Wolverhampton, permission to run essential overnight testing of the electrical systems along the new Midland Metro route on 23 April.

The granting of the possession will ensure that the Metro’s electronic systems do not interfere with Network Rail’s or those controlling trains using New Street station.

Phil Hewitt, Centro’s Metro programme director, said: “The only way we can carry out this work is by getting a possession, when no trains are running, from Network Rail and we are grateful to them for speeding up the process and cutting the length of time you usually have to wait.

“This is a crucial piece of work because once done it clears the way for us to carry out the final testing, commissioning of, and staff training for the new extension. Once that process is completed we can start running trams down to New Street station.”

The first trams in the £128m project, which includes a fleet of 21 new trams and a new maintenance depot at Wednesbury, began running in December.

The tram development is also now back on track after delays caused by the run up to Christmas pushed it into 2016.

Earlier this week, it was announced that Metro tram fleet will be retro-fitted with batteries, making them the first trams in the UK capable of catenary-free running. It is expected that the tram system will boost the West Midlands economy by more than £50m a year and create 1,300 new jobs.

Comments

Andrew G   20/02/2016 at 00:31

The trams could be electric & battery powered trams that will be used for the 1st time in Birmingham as the route will be cantery free (non-electrified).

Ian Jenkins, Campaign For Rail.   21/02/2016 at 12:34

Fine, but why does it have to wait another 9 weeks? If this were Manchester they would be running by now

Add your comment

 

related

Rail industry Focus

View all News

Comment

The challenge of completing Crossrail

05/07/2019The challenge of completing Crossrail

With a new plan now in place to deliver Crossrail, Hedley Ayres, National Audit Office manager, major projects and programmes, takes a look at ho... more >
Preparing the industry to deliver trains for the future

04/07/2019Preparing the industry to deliver trains for the future

The move to decarbonise the rail network involves shifting to cleaner modes of traction by 2050. David Clarke, technical director at the Railway ... more >

'the sleepers' blog

Network Rail’s Anna-Jane Hunter on, NPR, TRU, HS2 and supply chain opportunities

12/08/2019Network Rail’s Anna-Jane Hunter on, NPR, TRU, HS2 and supply chain opportunities

Anna- Jane Hunter, is a ‘proud northerner’ and is passionate about continuing the investment and success story of rail across the North.  She plays a key role in working with government and northern leaders to enable the network... more >
read more blog posts from 'the sleeper' >

Interviews

Andrew Haines, CE of Network Rail, tells BBC News his organisation could issue future rail franchises

24/06/2019Andrew Haines, CE of Network Rail, tells BBC News his organisation could issue future rail franchises

Andrew Haines, the Chief Executive of Network Rail, has told the Today programme on Radio 4's BBC’s flagship news programme that he would not rule out his organisation issuing future r... more >
Malcolm Holmes, executive director of West Midlands Rail Executive, announced as TCR Midlands speaker in Birmingham

24/06/2019Malcolm Holmes, executive director of West Midlands Rail Executive, announced as TCR Midlands speaker in Birmingham

Ahead of his appearance, Malcolm Holmes spoke with Rail Technology Magazine about what key leaders in the industry were doing to improve rail in the Midlands. He said: “It’s very... more >