Metro Flow project officially gets underway

The Metro Flow project – which will see three sections of track between Pelaw and Bede on the Tyne and Wear Metro doubled to increase service frequencies, reduce journey times and improve reliability – has officially got underway at a special ceremony. The £100m project is being mostly funded from the Government’s Transforming Cities Fund and will see a major 12 week closure of the line between September and December this year.

The project will see an existing freight line upgraded and electrified to allow Metro services to use this line and thus creating capacity for an extra 24,000 passenger journeys a day. The current single-line sections total 3km between Pelaw and Hebburn (800 metres), Hebburn and Jarrow (1.4km) and Jarrow and Bede (600 metres).

The overall benefits of the Metro Flow project will enable the Metro to run a train every 10 minutes outside the central area for the first time which not only gives additional capacity for 24,000 passengers a day but will also improve reliability and allow quicker recovery from major disruptions. It will also enable better support for major events including the Great North Run, Sunderland International Airshow, stadium concerts and major supporting events. Long-term it unlocks the door to the expansion of the Metro system.

Cllr Tracey Dixon, Leader of South Tyneside Council, said: “We’re absolutely delighted to see this much-anticipated project get underway. Metro Flow will deliver huge benefits for South Tyneside and for the wider region; it will increase capacity, frequency and efficiency on the system. A safe, reliable and efficient public transport network is vital to boost economic growth, and to link our residents and businesses to job, education and social opportunities. It will also promote sustainable transport and support our move towards a cleaner, greener borough.”

Cllr Martin Gannon, Chair of the North East Joint Transport Committee, said: “I’m thrilled to see the Metro Flow project get underway – this is great news for passengers who will experience greatly improved reliability and reduced journey times upon completion. This project will be truly transformational for local people, boosting capacity for an extra 24,00 customers every day. The increase helps us to deliver on our green ambitious as outlined in the North East Transport Plan, providing appealing, sustainable transport choices for local people. Thanks to funding from the region’s Transforming Cities Fund, this project will help to welcome many new passengers to our public transport network.”

Martin Kearney, Chief Operating Officer at Nexus, added: “The Metro Flow project is going to be transformative for the Tyne and Wear Metro. It’s great to be able to mark the official start on site for these extensive track dualling works. When the project is completed at the end of the year the dualled track will allow us to increase the frequency of Metro services system-wide from twelve minutes to ten minutes outside of the central areas. This means more regular services, and faster journey times for our customers. This also gives us the scope to examine future opportunities to expand the network to other areas that are currently not served by Metro.”

The project will cost £103 million in total with £95 million of this coming from the Transforming Cities Fund. Not only will this go towards the infrastructure works but it has also enabled Nexus to order an additional four trains from Stadler to bring the total order to 46.

This entry was posted in Tyne and Wear Metro. Bookmark the permalink.