Midland Metro extension to cost £50m

An extension of the Midland Metro in Wolverhampton city centre is set to be made even bigger and cost £50 million, the Express & Star can reveal today.

An extension of the Midland Metro in Wolverhampton city centre is set to be made even bigger and cost £50 million, the Express & Star can reveal today.

Trams will glide up to the University of Wolverhampton in Stafford Street and may even come back to the bus station along the city's ring road, under a redesign of the current plans. Transport bosses today announced they had taken designs back to the drawing board following consultation with businesses and passengers in the city.

Plans have been under discussion for more than a year to extend the existing line from St George's terminus and take trams around the city centre, down Lichfield Street, to the new £22.5m bus station, and back.

But concerns were raised that passengers would end up going nowhere by sitting on trams that go to the train station and come back along the same stretch of track.

Transport authority Centro will unveil new plans in November after the government has completed a review of all public spending.

They are hopeful that despite increasing the cost of the project from £30m to £50m, they will be able to make a good case.

Route

Extension plans for the Metro have been on the cards ever since the existing 23-stop route between Wolverhampton and Birmingham opened in 1999.

An £81m extension of the scheme in Birmingham was promised funding under the Labour government but is facing an uncertain future.

Centro chief executive Geoff Inskip said: "The original plan was for a single line to the railway station and back out.

"We believe we can improve it by taking the Metro to places people need to go, such as the University of Wolverhampton.

"This will give people the option of using the tram to go across Wolverhampton. Also passengers don't have to go to the train station and back if they don't actually need to go there."

EXCLUSIVE by Daniel Wainwright

Comments for: "Midland Metro extension to cost £50m"

Andy

Why? This is an absolute waste of money. Sort the city out first and make it worthwhile even going into it before even contemplating something like this. until this happens (which will probably be never) I'll continue to go to the Bull Ring.

Andy

And besides, its such a long walk isn't it from Bilston Street to the Uni! Im sure the majority of students who are probably under 25 find it so difficult to walk the 3/4 mile.

Pillocks.

Paul

What planet are Centro on, there are public spending cuts everywhere and yet they want still more money for this white elephant!

steve Briscoe

In this present climate it is a waste of money,in fact it should have gone from there in the first place!

Friends of Dudley town centre

me

Dudley is prime for an extension of the Metro, along with Merry Hill, I agree with you.

Wolverhampton Metro should link into the transport interchange, and forget the Wolverhampton Loop, focus on the other parts of the midlands, but dont mothball the Metro, all in my humble opinion.

Dave Ellis

What a ridiculous waste of money just to get the trams closer to the train station. They're only 100 yards away as it is. Someone has too much time on their hands and are in need of a reality check.

BRUCE

Fortunately dreams are free.And who is going to supply the money?Now.

PJW Holland

RAILWAY station

If you will cast your minds back I suggested using a part of the redundant section of the ring road for this purpose. However I suspect the route as it seems to be proposed will be too long and therefore uneconomic. Taking the trams down Broad Street would seem sensible... but because the trams are mainline railway size I doubt there is room unless the street were made a no-go zone for other vehicles.

If they think a little further they could even come up with a more sensible option utilizing one of the last sections of the preserved route of the Low Level/Snow Hill railway line.... This would also open up the possibility of the future extension to Wednesfield.

me

The trams are not the same size as heavy rail vehicles, they are narrower in carriage width. Also the new (proposed) fleet will likely be a different length too, which give more options for on-street running.

PJW Holland

They run on the same gauge as mainline rail and they occupy as much space. The turning circle of the vehicles renders them unsuitable for most roads. They are far too wide to operate on most streets. A few inches off the width makes little difference.

Meanwhile the desired effect can be achieved by rerouting the trams along the original route from Priestfield to Low Level and up Broad Street/Railway Street/Piper's Row AND the accident black spot around the unsightly bridge would be eliminated... so too could that monstrous construction.

jphb

Down Cleveland Street, Salop Street to

a stop for the Market, School Street,

Waterloo Road as far as the Molineux/Asda

for a further stop then into Stafford

Street and a stop for the University and

finally via Princess Square and Lichfield

Street to Piper's Row and the bus station

and rejoin the current row. Abandon the

current stop - it's near enough the bus

station.

That would be a City Centre loop that

might be some use and might persuade

somebody to do something about the Cleveland

Street side of town - like demolish the lot and plant a park.

English Exile

Now that really is a waste of money with Wolverhampton, a once great town, in a downward spiral.

Who the hell wants to visit Wolverhampton these days?

Nick

A crazy idea, put the money into sorting out the links between the 5 W route, Wolves, Wednesfield, Willenhall, Walsall, Wednesbury, get people into the city and let them walk through it, putting them on a metro to get across it means that they don't see or use the facilities \ shops \ services in between you muppets. At the moment the metro takes people out of the city to Birmingham rather than into it.

alex

waste of money. focus on extending it to merry hill, walsall and dudley

PJW Holland

An even greater waste of money. There is no demand for such a service.

me

There is demand that could be supported if the old freight line was opened up to freight and metro, ie tram-train.

Westie

Tell you what, before embarking on this waste of resources, why don't they get the city clean and tidy first. Put money where its needed.

Iv'e just come back from 2 weeks in south Devon, and what a horrible sinking feeling I got yesterday when I had to get off the coach, and tread on old chewing gum, bits of paper everywhere, fag ends littered around and other eyesores. Down there, its a lot cleaner, the bus stations are well maintained and the streets cleaned more often. Why can't we have that standard here. No matter where you travel too, coming back here makes your heart sink into your shoes. I need to win the lotto to move.

I suppose the short distance folks have to walk is an ordeal in such a place.