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Metrolink Airport Line To Launch Early

New 14.5km route through Wythenshawe a year ahead of schedule

Published on June 23rd 2014.

Metrolink Airport Line To Launch Early

TRANSPORT for Greater Manchester (TfGM) have announced that the new Metrolink route for Wythenshawe and Manchester Airport will open before the end of 2014 - twelve months ahead of schedule.

"We’ve become an ultra-efficient machine – and this is our collective reward."

Leaving the South Manchester line at the St Werburgh's Road station, the new 14.5km route will service fifteen new stations: Barlow Moor Road, Sale Water Park, Northern Moor, Wythenshawe Park, Moor Road, Baguley, Roundthorn, Martinscroft, Benchill, Crossacres, Wythenshawe Town Centre, Robinswood Road, Peel Hall, Shadowmoss and Manchester Airport (see the full route below).

Metrolink are also providing passengers with a free 300-space Park and Ride facility at the Sale Water Park.

Trams will start to run along part of the route from Monday 23 June as the very first stages of the testing and commissioning process get under way.

Metrolink Airport LineMetrolink Airport Line

Councillor Andrew Fender, Chair of the Transport for Greater Manchester (TfGM) Committee, said: “The sheer scale of the challenges this project presented make its early completion a truly phenomenal achievement.

“To be so far ahead is down to several marginal gains adding up to a significant result: the early delivery of a number of lines allowed us to move resources onto the line earlier; lessons learnt during the early phases of the expansion drove efficiencies across work areas; creating a desktop simulator cut the timescales for driver training in half.

“These are just a few examples of how, by working closely with local authorities, utility firms, our principal contractor MPT, stakeholders and the operator MRDL, we’ve become an ultra-efficient machine – and this is our collective reward."

In May 2009 the £1.5 billion Greater Manchester Transport Fund (GMTF) was established to pay for major transport schemes, including the Metrolink expansion programme.

Metrolink 2016Metrolink by 2016?

The new route, delivered by the M-Pact Thales consortium, is one of the country's largest civil engineering projects and includes two new bridges over the M60 and M56, a viaduct over the Mersey Valley, the Ringway Road dual carriageway and an underpass at Manchester Airport.

Sir Richard Leese, leader of Manchester City Council, said: “The early opening of this vital new line to Wythenshawe and Manchester Airport is a tremendous boost for Manchester.

“For Wythenshawe, it will be a pivotal moment in the town’s regeneration which will significantly enhance its pull as a place in which to live and do business.

“For the airport, which is crucial to the fortunes of the whole of Greater Manchester, it will provide another attractive transport option for customers and improve links with the emerging Airport City development.

“In short, this line will be a major new artery helping to pump investment into the heart of our region.”


Andrew Cowan, Chief Operating Officer for Manchester Airports Group (MAG), said: “We will be aiming to create thousands of jobs with the project and the addition of more transport links, alongside a fourth rail platform which is also under construction, continues to underscore that Manchester Airport is one of the best served in the UK by ground transport.

“As well as assisting staff to access the site, we expect that it will also provide another option for the 21m passengers who already use the airport.”

Services will initially run every twelve minutes between Manchester Airport and Cornbrook, and will start to run through the city centre once the Second City Crossing is complete in 2017.

The latest news comes as TfGM are set to open twelve weeks of public consultation for the proposed £350m tram link from the city centre to the Trafford Centre.

More on the future of the Metrolink here.

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Harveys Keys8June 25th 2014.

Why so few stops, why only one stop before sale water park, we were told the tram would encourage us to use it and stop using the car, should be a stop or road at hardyfarm, plus why use old trams when derby nottingham and shefield use better trams why not lower stations on old lines where no trains run.

2 Responses: Reply To This...
AnonymousJune 25th 2014.

There's a station on the junction of Barlow Moor Rd and Mauldeth Rd. What would be the point of building one at Hardy Farm when there are very few people it would benefit?

AnonymousJune 25th 2014.

And Metrolink have bought almost 100 new trams in the last 5 years, so they're hardly old.

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