At a recent press briefing on the Edinburgh tram project it was announced that “interested” groups will get the chance to tour the Gogar depot and enjoy a short ride on a tram as part of a major public relations exercise by the Council. They are also considering whether they will allow general members of the public in to have a look around as part of pre-booked visits.
Cllr Lesley Hinds, Transport Convener on the City Council, said: “We would only be able to take small groups on a pre-booked basis, but it’s definitely the kind of thing we want to
look at in terms of improving our stakeholder engagement. I think we are gradually seeing a change of opinion about the trams, as people can see more work being done and tram tracks actually going down into places like St Andrew Square and that the tram is actually happening. I am very confident the project will be delivered with the £776m budget that the council set last year. I do not expect it to go over that.”
At the same briefing it was revealed that 20 of the 27 trams have now arrived in Edinburgh with the remainder still expected to be in Scotland by the end of the year. Although the contracted network will only need around half of these vehicles to operate the service it is planned that all 27 will see service to make sure they all remain operational without excessive amounts of maintenance.
It is planned that a full update will be released in October giving details of the current financial situation and also the planned timings for the completion of the project, although it is still expected that the first trams will be running in 2014.