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Manchester Metrolink

VolkerRail and Laing O'Rourke in consortium with Thales were awarded the Manchester Metrolink Phase 3 project. This is the largest light rail scheme in the UK with 60km of new track expected to be laid and 55 new stops to be built.


The scope of the works was split. VolkerRail and Laing O'Rourke being responsible for the design, construction and maintenance of the civil engineering and track and Thales being responsible for the tram operating systems.

The new Metrolink line between Manchester and Central Park opened in Spring 2011, alongside the new line to St Werburgh´s Road in Chorlton. The lines also opened at Oldham Mumps in Autumn 2011. The Rochdale to Droylsden lines are expected to open in Spring/Summer 2012.

Summary of the works undertaken by VolkerRail and Laing O'Rourke

New Depot Facilities at Trafford Bar

  • Stabling areas for new light rail vehicles
  • Maintenance equipment for light rail vehicles
  • Depot Building and car parking
  • Connection to the existing Metrolink system at Trafford Bar


Oldham/Rochdale Line

  • Take possession of an existing Network Rail Operational Line
  • Connection to existing Metrolink System at Queens Road and Smedley Viaduct
  • Extensive refurbishment of existing railway structures including 200 Victorian railway structures and four tunnels
  • New structure over existing operational railway at Rochdale
  • Refurbishment/modification of existing stations
  • Street running section at Rochdale and new tram stop
  • Reconstruction of track bed and alignment


East Manchester Line

  • Connection to existing Metrolink System at Piccadilly station
  • Coordination of diversion of Statutory Undertakers apparatus
  • New underpass structure at Great Ancoats Street
  • At grade track alignment through Ancoats development area
  • New Tram Stops along alignment including Sport City
  • Street running section along Ashton New Road with associated highway works
  • Third Party accommodation works


South Manchester

  • Possession of disused railway line
  • Refurbishment of existing structures
  • Coordination of diversion of Statutory Undertakers apparatus
  • New tram stops within railway cutting
  • Third Party accommodation works
  • New track alignment and permanent way
  • Connection to the existing Metrolink System at Trafford Bar


Media City

  • Connection into existing system at Harbour City
  • Track alignment and construction of new stop structure within new Media City Development (Peel Holdings)
  • All works were planned and implemented in accordance with the Project Integrated Management System. This System was developed from the VolkerRail Integrated Management System and the Laing O'Rourke IMS. It was developed to provide the level and control and planning commensurate with the requirements of this extensive project
  • All of the system commissioning works were included in the project and the overall Systemwide integration and commissioning programmes were carried out in conjunction with the network operating systems contractor Thales

Facts and figures

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