Passengers on the Midland Metro are being advised of major changes later this month when work to connect the existing tram system to the new Birmingham city centre extension gets underway.
From Sunday October 25th tram services will no longer use Snow Hill Station but will instead start and finish at St Paul’s. Passengers will be able to use a replacement shuttle bus service between St Paul’s and Snow Hill Queensway which is being laid on by the Metro’s owner – public transport co-ordinator Centro – and the system’s operator National Express.
The arrangement is expected to last for up to six weeks while engineers install a new junction on the track between Snow Hill and St Paul’s, along with new signalling equipment and overhead electrification to tie the line in to the new extension
Once work is complete services will run to the new Bull Street stop in the city centre. The rest of the extension down Corporation Street to New Street Station is scheduled to open by the end of the year.
Cllr Roger Horton, lead member for rail and Metro on the region’s Transport Delivery Committee, said: “We appreciate that this work will cause some temporary disruption for passengers and we would like to apologise for this in advance. Despite the short term inconvenience it’s worth remembering that this work paves the way for passengers
to be able to travel by tram right into the heart of the city centre. That’s good for passengers, good for retailers and good for our regional economy.”
All change on Midland Metro as Birmingham city centre tram extension enters key phase.
Apart from the replacement shuttle bus, which will use the stop opposite the entrance to St Paul’s on Constitution Hill, existing National Express bus services on the route – Nos. 16, 46, 74 and 75 – will also accept Midland Metro tickets. Conductors will also be on hand at the bus stops selling Metro tickets. Alternatively, passengers wishing to travel into Snow Hill Station by rail can change between tram and train at the Jewellery Quarter but must have a valid train ticket.
Further details, including timetables for the replacement buses, ticket details for transfer onto rail and walking routes will be available nearer the time on www.networkwestmidlands.com/ and http://nxbus.co.uk/the-metro/
The information will also be available on leaflets that will be distributed to passengers ahead of the start of the improvement works.
The city centre extension, a joint project between Centro, Birmingham City Council and the Black Country councils, will bring more than three million people directly into the heart of the city’s shopping district each year. It will also provide a convenient link between Birmingham’s two major rail stations, the emerging business district at Snow Hill, the unique and historic Jewellery Quarter and out into the Black Country using the existing Metro line.
The extension will serve as a springboard for future Metro routes such as to the city’s forthcoming high speed rail station in Eastside, and Centenary Square. The £128 million project, which includes a £50 million fleet of new trams which started going into service last year, is expected to boost the regional economy by around £50 million a year and create more than 1,300 sustainable new jobs.