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Light Rail News: Index 2017 > News Item
Transport for West Midlands (TfWM) is to take over the day-to-day running of its Midland Metro trams from October 2018 when the current concession, held by National Express, finishes. The move will enable TfWM, which is the transport arm of the West Midlands Combined Authority (WMCA), to plough millions of pounds of future profits back into expanding the network. Existing National Express staff will be transferred over to a new subsidiary company - Midland Metro Ltd - which will be wholly owned by the WMCA.
The combined authority is set to start a number of extensions which will see the network triple in size over the next decade, with passenger numbers forecast to increase from around 6.5 million at present to more than 30 million. That is expected to generate profits of around GBP50 million over the first 11 years which the WMCA will be able to channel back into the network for the benefit of passengers and the local economy.
In taking the decision, the WMCA board was told that if it decided to continue outsourcing tram services from October next year after the end of the existing concession the tendering process alone to appoint a new private operator would cost taxpayers several million pounds.
22 March 2017
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