MIDLAND METRO officials were this week fi nishing a critical report for the government to support a fi nal business proposal backing the 17km scheme (see News).
ICE members in the West Midlands were given an update on the scheme by Lloyd's Register rail consultant Huw Davies last month. Lloyd's Register is working on the project for West Midlands passenger transport executive Centro.
'The planning powers are all in place. It now remains for Centro to secure the funding from government, ' Davies said.
The latest report finalises the funding strategy and information from it will be used in a fi nal submission to the government in the New Year. It will be discussed at a Passenger Transport Association meeting on Monday.
Transport offi rs in the Midlands want to extend the existing 20km, £145M tramway running from Wolverhampton to Snow Hill by adding a further two lines totalling 15km.
'The rst will run from Snow Hill into the city centre through the big Five Ways business park.
'The second will run from Wednesbury to Brierly Hill through Dudley, where transport links are fairly poor, ' explained Davies.
'If this gets the go-ahead it could enable the Merry Hill shopping centre to expand.
Previous applications to do this have been refused as transport links were deemed to be inadequate, ' he said.