Metrolink’s popularity shows no sign of slowing down as new figures indicate that a record number of journeys are being made across the network.
Latest figures show that more than 40 million journeys a year are now being made on the system – an increase of over four million in the year to September.
The 11% increase in journeys coincides with the opening of the Second City Crossing and the completion of Metrolink’s phenomenal ‘big bang’ expansion programme – which further cemented the network’s place as the UK’s largest tram system.
TfGM Head of Metrolink, Danny Vaughan, said: “Since the new line through the city centre opened in February the number of people using Metrolink has shot up. It’s no coincidence that we’ve seen continued growth in line with our investment in the network. We now run more trams to more places, connecting more people than ever before with jobs, training, retail and leisure opportunities. The quality of service on offer has also played a key role in this success with the latest passenger satisfaction survey showing that 90% of our customers are happy with their journeys.
“I’m in no doubt that the number of people who use the network will continue to rise as we continue to improve and the network grows even further.”
In July, KeolisAmey Metrolink took over the reins of operating and maintaining the network, promising a raft of improvements ranging from new job opportunities through to increased security across the 60+ mile, seven line network.
Councillor Andrew Fender, Chair of the Transport for Greater Manchester Committee, said: “Without a doubt this year has been one of the best and most exciting in Metrolink’s 25 year history. We saw a new line open through the heart of the city centre, celebrated the network’s Silver Jubilee, appointed a new operator and started work on the Trafford Park Line.
“Hitting 40 million passenger journeys is a fantastic achievement and underpins our ongoing commitment to running more services through more communities to get even more people onto public transport.
“With the new operator on board for the next ten years, work under way to expand even further and cheaper fares for young people due to be introduced in the new year, Metrolink is set to continue reporting further record breaking increases in ridership.”
Announced last week, fare changes will come into effect from 1 January next year, including half price off-peak and weekend travel for 16-18 year olds. The change will result in a consistent and fair half-price offer right through from ages 5-18.