Nexus, the public body which owns and manages the Tyne and Wear Metro, is to invest £35m in Metro modernisation work in 2017.
The work will involve major projects to renew and replace Metro’s ageing infrastructure, including track and overhead lines.
It forms part of the £350m Metro all change modernisation programme, the scheme to secure Metro’s long term future over eleven years. The modernisation programme is now into its sixth year.
Major Metro renewal projects in 2017 include:
- Track replacement work between Wallsend and St James.
- The start of a five year scheme to replace 300km of overhead power lines.
- Track replacement work between Longbenton and Northumberland Park.
- The installation of a new Metro bridge over Killingworth Road.
Director of Rail and Infrastructure, Raymond Johnstone, said: “We are pressing on with modernisation projects worth a total of £35m in 2017 as we continue to secure the long term future of the Tyne and Wear Metro system.
“There are some major schemes, not least the track the replacement work, which will mean some disruption to passengers while we carry out the work.
“However, this will mean that we have a Metro system for many more generations to come. The investment is absolutely vital so that we replace ageing pieces of the infrastructure, which will be of benefit to the 39 million passengers who travel on Metro every year.”
Nexus will be investing £110 million through to 2021 on modernisation projects. This will bring total investment across the decade to over £350 million.
Nexus is in discussion with the Government over funding for its plans to invest £537 million in a new train fleet, and for a further £518.5 million to continue with the programme of essential renewals throughout the next decade.
This forms part of the Metro and Local Rail strategy agreed by the North East Combined Authority to ensure the long-term future and development of Metro and local rail services within the region.
Nexus provides, plans and promotes public transport to improve the economic prosperity of Tyne and Wear, and the daily lives of its people. We also look to the future, creating the travel networks people will want to use in decades to come.
Our plans include the Metro: all change modernisation programme, worth around £350m over 11 years, providing a step change in comfort and reliability for our passengers. We are also improving local bus services, working with local councils and operators through the Bus Strategy to meet the needs of local people. That means making sure buses go where people want them to, and provide a safe and welcoming travel environment. And we are investing in smart travel, with the new Pop card for use on Metro and beyond to make buying a ticket simpler and more flexible.