West Midlands Metro Westside extension begins operation
By significantly improving connectivity to the wider region, the new extension will support local businesses, as well as provide visitors to the 2022 Commonwealth Games with a convenient and frequent transit service.
West Midlands Metro has announced that its trams are now operating every 12 to 15 minutes between the city centre and Edgbaston, following the successful launch of services on the Birmingham Westside Metro extension.
Members of the West Midlands Metro team joined civic leaders, media representatives, tram enthusiasts and early morning customers for the first passenger services along the new section of line on 17 July 2022.
The landmark occasion also saw the return of trams to all stops in the city centre, including Grand Central, restoring the convenient link to regional and national rail services and Library.
Launched in time for the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games, the extension now offers the many visitors arriving in the city over the next few weeks a convenient and frequent service to the many hotels, hospitality businesses and entertainment venues in the area.
Sophie Allison, Interim Managing Director of Midland Metro Limited, said: “We would also like to thank customers for their patience as they awaited the return of trams to Grand Central and Library following the restoration of services between Wolverhampton and Bull Street a few weeks ago. This was made possible with the return to service of a number of trams following successful body panel replacement work. As this programme of work accelerates, even more trams will be re-joining the fleet, enabling us to increase service frequency across the network.”
Over the coming week, teams from Metro will also be around to support passengers using the service while Transport for West Midlands (TfWM) and Safer Travel police officers have also been out on Broad Street to assist and advise people on road safety on the evenings of 22 and 23 July 2022.
The Westside extension development has been led by TfWM, part of the West Midlands Combined Authority (WMCA), working with construction and design partner Midland Metro Alliance, operator Midland Metro Ltd and Birmingham City Council.
The new extension will support local businesses, vastly improving connectivity to the wider region, and Andy Street, Mayor of the West Midlands and WMCA chair, Councillor Ian Ward, WMCA portfolio holder for transport and leader of Birmingham City Council and local business leaders have all welcomed the launch.
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