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Transport Minister outlines Metro Phase Two plans

This press release was published under the 2011 - 2016 Welsh government

Work on delivery of the next phase of a modern, high-quality public transport Metro system for south east Wales could begin as early as 2017, with the latest stage of the project being kick-started with a transport industry ‘open day’ in Cardiff yesterday.
Tuesday 30 June 2015

Minister for Economy, Science and Transport Edwina Hart today updated Assembly Members on progress being made in delivering the South East Wales Metro.

She revealed Phase Two work for an integrated Metro system, estimated to cost £500 - £600m, to serve the growing public transportation needs of the Cardiff Capital City Region would be an integral part of Welsh Government negotiations for the All-Wales Passenger Wales Franchise.

Mrs Hart said:

“Significant progress has been made on key issues relating to the new rail franchise for Wales and the Metro. The Metro is more than just a transport project, it will be a catalyst for transforming the economic and social prospects of South East Wales and the country as a whole.

“We have reached the point where we can test out some of our ambitious proposals, and are continuing to deliver Phase One improvements, such as brand new stations at Ebbw Vale and Pye Corner, and improvements at existing stations such as Pontypridd.”

Forming part of the All-Wales rail franchise, the rail portion of the Metro would be run and managed by the not-for-dividend company being set up by the Welsh Government to operate the rail franchise on its behalf after 2018. The company would be operated on a model similar to Transport for London.

The Minister also announced members of the panel that will advise the Welsh Government through the detailed rail franchise negotiations and development of the Metro. They will be David Stevens, Chief Operating Officer at Admiral; Andrew Haines, Chief Executive at the Civil Aviation Authority and former managing director at South West Trains and First Group; and Chris Gibb, former managing director at Virgin Trains and Wales & Borders Trains.

The commercial process began this week when the Welsh Government began market testing the proposals with an industry engagement event in Cardiff yesterday. This allowed potential bidders, rolling stock operators, maintenance operators, financiers and interested parties to explore and discuss the new franchise and Metro directly with the Welsh Government.

Mrs Hart said:

“We are engaging with the industry to help us develop the most efficient delivery structure. We believe that this approach will yield innovative solutions which may be better value and outcomes. At this stage there are many options for modes of transport including; light rail, heavy rail, bus rapid transit and trams. We are keeping an open mind on the detail of what improvements may look like in reality. That said we will not compromise on quality, capacity, reliability and efficiency, which must increase to allow more frequent services to be run.

“By combining the procurement of the Metro with the All-Wales Franchise we will be able to ensure a step change in quality for rail-users right across Wales. We are expecting real benefits to passengers, including faster journey times, higher quality services, improved reliability and less overcrowding.”



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Transport 30 June 2015 Economy Programme for Government - Growth South East Wales

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