Latest Rail News

15.02.13

Platform work to start on Midland Metro

Midland Metro is to temporarily close this Easter while work continues on a £128m project to extend and improve the tram system.

The line between Birmingham and Wolverhampton will close on Friday March 29 and reopen on Monday April 15.

The work will include modifying existing platforms for a £40m new fleet of trams. The 20 vehicles will come into service during 2014 to increase the frequency to ten trams an hour.

The new trams will increase capacity by 40%, easing overcrowding. The whole fleet will be running by 2015 when the extension from Snow Hill to New Street station opens.

The project is being run by Centro, Birmingham City Council and Black County Council and the new trams are being built by Spain’s CAF.

Paul Griffiths, Centro’s Metro programme director, said: “We appreciate that the closure will cause disruption for passengers but it is the only way we can carry out the work.

“We have chosen the Easter period because many people take the school break off work which means fewer passengers will be affected.

“Deferring the engineering work until the school summer holidays would jeopardise the build programme for the city centre extension and the deployment schedule for the new trams.

“We apologise in advance for the inconvenience but the benefits that this project will bring for passengers are substantial. It really is a case of short term pain for long term gain.”

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