The new Metrolink line to Wythenshawe and Manchester Airport will launch before the year is out – more than 12 months ahead of schedule.
Trams started to run along part of the route from Monday, June 23 as the very first stages of a thorough testing and commissioning process get under way. The 14.5km route, delivered by the MPT consortium, is one of the biggest live civil engineering projects in the country.
Several major purpose-built structures have been built as part of the programme, including a viaduct over the Mersey Valley, two new bridges over the M60 and M56, and the Ringway Road dual carriageway and underpass at Manchester Airport.
All of the existing highway and street lighting and road signs along the entire route have been renewed and significant urban realm improvements have been made around each of the line’s 15 new stops. A 300-space Park and Ride facility at Sale Water Park, free for Metrolink passengers to use, will also serve the line. Services will initially run between Manchester Airport and Cornbrook every 12 minutes. They will start to run through the city centre once the Second City Crossing is complete in 2017.