West Midlands transport authority Centro’s £31m plan to extend the Midland Metro in Birmingham city centre in the UK has entered a new stage of development, with authorities seeking public views on the project.
The extension plan from Centro will see the tram system travel through Paradise Circus up to Centenary Square to help improve transport links and drive economic regeneration in the city.
Centro rail lead member Cllr Roger Horton said that work is already underway to connect the Midland Metro to both New Street and Snow Hill stations and the plan is to build on that and further improve the network in Birmingham city centre.
“These plans would play a significant role in supporting some of the major redevelopment work taking place in the city, which will bring about an extra £2 billion for the economy and create up to 40,000 jobs,” Horton said.
“We want to hear the thoughts of passengers and businesses and would urge them to take the time to take part in the consultation and give us their views,” Horton added.
The proposals, outlined in partnership with Birmingham City Council, will build on the ongoing work to provide further connections to important attractions in the city such as the ICC [International Conference Centre], Symphony Hall and Birmingham Museum and Art Galleries.
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If the project goes ahead, trams will run from the new stop on Stephenson Street located outside New Street Station, travelling along Pinfold Street, Victoria Square, Paradise Street and Broad Street before stopping at Centenary Square. The project also includes building new stops at the Town Hall and Centenary Square.
The public consultation on the planned extension will run until the end of September 2013.
Before the end of 2013, Centro plans to submit an application to the government for a supplementary transport and works act order, which will grant the legal powers required to build and operate the extension.
If granted, work on the project would start in 2015, with the extended tram system scheduled to be opened for public use in 2017.
Image: The extended tram system would link the city’s two largest railway stations, New Street and Snow Hill. Credit: Centro.