edinburgh

The new Edinburgh trams system has officially entered operational service, providing integrated public transport in the Scottish capital.

Opening the Edinburgh tram system follows several months of essential and rigorous testing, commissioning and training. The tram first travelled from York Place to Edinburgh Airport before returning to St Andrew Square.

Scottish Transport Minister Keith Brown said: "The tram link will support employment and much improved local, national and international transport links.

The tram project has been hugely challenging for the people of Edinburgh, but now there seems to be a growing positivity in the city about the start of a brand new transport service.

"The tram project has been hugely challenging for the people of Edinburgh, but now there seems to be a growing positivity in the city about the start of a brand new transport service."

"This will include connections to the airport, bus station and railways, such as the recently refurbished Haymarket Station, and a new Edinburgh Gateway rail-tram interchange as part of the Scottish Government’s £742m Edinburgh-Glasgow improvement programme."

The trams are expected to offer an efficient and sustainable link between the Airport and York Place in the city centre.

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Work on the tram system was cancelled within a few weeks after the construction began in 2007. Due to a dispute with the main contractor, the project was delayed for months, reported BBC.

Transport convener councillor Lesley Hinds said: "The tram project has been hugely challenging for the people of Edinburgh, but now there seems to be a growing positivity in the city about the start of a brand new transport service.

"As we’ve said, there are no current plans to look at extending the line and it would be inappropriate to do anything until we’ve had a chance to review the service’s performance over the first six months or so. I’ve called for a report to be presented to council before the end of 2014 so that future options can be debated."


Image: The new Edinburgh trams service started running on 31 May. Photo: courtesy of Transport for Edinburgh.