Second City Crossing opening date announced

The latest piece of the Manchester Metrolink jigsaw will be opened to the public on Sunday 26th February – subject to the successful completion of final testing and commissioning. The “transformative” Second City Crossing runs from St Peter’s Square – which has enjoyed major reconstruction in preparation – to Victoria via Exchange Square with initially trams from East Didsbury to Shaw & Crompton/Rochdale Town Centre using the line.

Peter Cushing, TfGM Metrolink Director, is delighted with the news: “The return of passenger trams to this area of the city will be a historic day and the culmination of years of hard work. I look forward to our customers right across the tram network experiencing the benefits.

From Sunday 26th February services from Manchester Airport will be extended through to Deansgate-Castlefield (from Cornbrook) with this service due to be further extended to Victoria later this year (once signalling work is completed). Those services which previously terminated at Deansgate-Castlefield and Exchange Square will be extended across the city centre providing a link between East Didsbury and Shaw & Crompton.

The following service pattern will operate:

Altrincham to Bury via Market Street

Altrincham to Etihad Campus

Bury to Piccadilly

Ashton-under-Lyne to Eccles

MediaCityUK to Piccadilly

Manchester Airport to Deansgate-Castlefield

East Didsbury to Rochdale Town Centre via Exchange Square

East Didsbury to Shaw & Crompton via Exchange Square

Cllr Andrew Fender, Chair of the TfGM Committee, commented: “Not only will the Second City Crossing offer more trams through the city – on a more flexible, reliable tram network – but also a fantastic new view of historic Manchester landmarks such as the Royal Exchange and Manchester Town Hall.”

Final testing of the line will now take place and provided that this all runs smoothly the first passengers will be carried on the Second City Crossing from Sunday 26th February. This will complete the Big Bang Metrolink expansion which has also seen extensions built to MediaCityUK, East Didsbury, Rochdale, Ashton-under-Lyne and Manchester Airport. But it won’t end there as initial construction work has already commenced on the Trafford Park line.

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5 Responses to Second City Crossing opening date announced

  1. peter narramore says:

    Great to have an opening date for the new route. As a small aside, presumably my recent shot of 3090 crossing Piccadilly Gardens with an East Didsbury service will soon be out of date.

  2. tram man says:

    it will be interesting to see how the travelling public take to the new 2cc.It is certainly quicker if you just want to get across town to the south side from victoria or vice versa.My only concern is once you leave st.peters square on 2cc the next stop(exchange square) is virtually in victoria.I know space is at a premium along cross street but i think they should have tried to fit another station /stop some where between st.peters and exchange square.The drivers will love it, they will be able to get from Peters sq to Vic without fighting their way through the delta junction, Market st,shudehill and balloon street.

    • Ken Walker says:

      Exactly, the new route does not introduce any new opportunities for passengers other than for passengers from the south to access the Corporation Street entrance to the Arndale, which was only a few minutes walk anyway from Victoria or Shudehill. The only benefit will be that the Bury/Altrincham service will have an alternative route rather than being curtailed if there is an incident on Moseley Street or Market Street. If the middle platform at Victoria was made available trams for Ashton would be able to use it and reverse at Vic without unduly disrupting services there if there was a problem on Moseley Street.

  3. Alan Holmewood says:

    With 2CC opening today, this BBC cab ride video may be of interest:

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