In Pictures: M5000 3103 enters service as 3104 arrives

There has been more movement with the M5000s on Manchester Metrolink with 3103 – which seemingly snuck into Manchester without us noticing! – entering service on Saturday 19th September running as part of a double unit on the Eccles route. Meanwhile the same day saw 3104 delivered to Queens Road Depot for a start to be made on its own commissioning and mileage accumulation ahead of an entry into service.

Two photos showing 3103 at Eccles on 19th September 2015 - its first day in service. (Both Photographs by Steve Kemp)

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9 Responses to In Pictures: M5000 3103 enters service as 3104 arrives

  1. John Gilbert says:

    Excellent news, but I do fear that one day those high platforms are going to haunt Manchester.

    • Nigel Pennick says:

      High platforms make Manchester Metrolink technically a Stadtbahn, like the reconstructed Stuttgart system which went from a metre-gauge traditional tramway to a high-platform standard-gauge system. It was a 1980s German technical solution that was superseded rapidly by the development of very-low-floor trams.

    • David Butterworth says:

      I don’t know what you mean. The system opened in 1992, twenty three years ago and there haven’t been any problems with the high platforms. I cannot see any particular disadvantages in having high platforms, just as long as entry to the trams is on the level, which it is.

      The only safety issue perhaps is if someone falls off the edge of the platform-its further to fall, but that is the case with the London Underground and ordinary platforms on the rail network.

  2. Ralph Oakes-Garnett says:

    Metrolink may eventually have a low floor system as well as high floor as in Koln.

  3. David Butterworth says:

    Of course my reply was in response to John Gilbert’s comment.

    In reply to Ralph’s comment, I doubt that Manchester will ever change to a low floor system, considering all the expenditure on infrastructure and vehicles.

  4. Christopher Callan says:

    Agree with David. The horse bolted long ago. See little reason for Manchester to no go low floor. To create mixed stock mixed height network sounds overtly complicated and recipe for disaster.

  5. Mark Sheppard says:

    High platform was a pragmatic solution when Metrolink inherited the Bury and Altrincham standard guage lines with existing high platform stations. This approach has continued on the Oldham and Rochdale lines.

  6. Nigel Pennick says:

    The original stadtbahn cars in Stuttgart had folding steps for original tram stops where platforms had not yet been built, enabling them to operate ‘ordinary’ tram routes. Of course these stops were inaccessible to disabled people, as they had been earlier with the old metre-gauge articulated trams which had internal steps. Mixed high-and low-floor operation always causes problems, needing two separate platforms, as in the Stuttgart subways before metre-gauge operation ended in 2007.

  7. Erik Ickerbobs says:

    Guys, five had profiled platforms.
    St Peter’s Square (replaced 2009)
    Mosley Street (closed 2013)
    High Street (closed 1998)
    Market Street (replaced 1998)
    Piccadilly Gardens (replaced 2009)