Midland Metro does the double at Global Light Rail awards

Midland Metro does the double at Global Light Rail awards

The Midland Metro is celebrating a glorious double after scooping two prizes at the prestigious Global Light Rail Awards in London.

It won Best Customer Initiative for the introduction of contactless payments on to the service, and Project of the Year Over €50 million for the opening of the Birmingham city centre extension from Snow Hill to New Street station, the conclusion of the £127m city centre extension and fleet replacement programme.

Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Transport Paul Maynard MP presented the awards in an evening at the headquarters of the Honourable Artillery Company in the City of London.

Cllr Roger Lawrence, lead member for transport for the West Midlands Combined Authority (WMCA) which runs the Metro, said: "Both of these projects are the result of a lot of hard work by a dedicated team of professionals, so these awards are richly deserved and I am delighted for them.

"The Metro extension was an extremely complicated project which, now it is completed, is delivering great benefits for its passengers, while passenger numbers have risen sharply, not least because of the introduction of contactless payment which is a speedy and convenient way of paying for travel on the Metro."

The extension forms a part of a £128m investment programme that saw the construction of the extension, a fleet of new trams and the expansion of the Metro depot at Wednesbury.

It is expected to boost the West Midlands economy by more than £50m a year and create 1,300 new jobs.