The ambitious plans to expand the Metro system have been given the go-ahead by the North East Combined AuthorityRead the full story ›
The North East Combined Authority has voted unanimously in favour of plans to improve and expand the Tyne and Wear Metro.
However, it's a long way off. It would happen in stages and needs to secure lots of government funding. That application process now begins
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Others, including Cllr Nick Forbes, say we should plough on asap
North East Combined Authority agrees, not unanimously, to seek further reassurance from the new(!) government re devolution deal
Metro decision coming later - first where we are on North East devolution
A meeting to discuss plans to expand the Metro system has begun.
Meeting underway of North East council leaders. Discussion coming up whether to approve plans to expand Metro system https://t.co/J5Eg0jkjJw
Take a look at our map to see where the Metro expansion could go:
New plans would link the Metro system to old railway lines which have been closed to passengers for more than 50 years.
In Northumberland towns like Ashington, Bedlington and Blyth have tracks which are still used by freight trains.
But people living in the South East of the county say it's a waste that people can't commute and connect with the rest of the region.
Our correspondent, Frances Read, has been to Bedlington Station which is one of the proposed towns on the new network.
The NECA (North East Combined Authority) and Nexus have set out what they are calling 'their vision' for transport in the region over the next 20 years.
‘Our Journey’ sets out a wish list for a new Metro fleet and improvements to the network.
It will be discussed at a meeting later this month in more detail (July)
Replacing the Metro trains and electrifying the line though could cost upwards of £500 million.
Some of the main aims of the vision over the next 20 years are:
- Replace outdated Pacer trains and deliver an essential new fleet for the Tyne and Wear Metro
- Create a regional express network, with high quality, faster trains and more routes electrified
- Open new local stations on current lines, re-open key disused lines, consider more Park and Ride stations.
- Upgrade freight-only sections to passenger use and build new routes
- Devolve greater control to the region, so local rail and Metro can be managed together to deliver a higher standard for stations,information and customer service
- Work with rail industry partners to address overcrowding and improve cycle access ontrains
Delays of up to 15 mins to trains running between South Gosforth and South Shields due to a failed train.
Have you experienced delays on the Metro system over the past few days?
If so - it's down to there being less trains running on the shorter busier routes at peak times.
So where are the trains?
Operator DB Regio found a fault with some of the doors on some of the Metro trains.
This means they are being tested - and to do this, trains are being temporarily taken out of service.
A Metro spokesperson told us the main routes affected during rush hour (0700 to 0930 and 1630 to 1900) involve the following trains:
- Regent Centre
It's hoped that services will be back to normal by Tuesday, with the problem not likely to affect the quieter weekend and Bank Holiday services.
Did you know?
- There are 90 Metro trains (individual cars) available in total on the system
- 78 run on the lines at peak time
- 54 run at the weekend
Find out more about ant delays to the system here