Swiss manufacturer Stadler has beaten rivals CAF and Hitachi to secure a £362m contract to build a fleet of 42 new trains for the Tyne & Wear Metro. The Department for Transport will be providing £337m in funding for the trains.
Unveiling the new designs, Nexus, which operates the metro system said some 3,000 passengers had provided views and ideas on how the new trains could meet their needs.
Each of the 42 trains will be five carriages long and capable of carrying 600 passengers many of whom expressed a strong desire for linear ‘London Tube’ style seating along with modern features like USB charging, bike storage and retractable door steps.
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The trains will be air conditioned, feature underfloor heating, external destination screens, passenger information system, wifi, CCTV and be 30% more efficient. There is an option for four more trains if service frequencies are increased.
A new £70m maintenance depot will be built at South Gosforth, creating construction jobs and employing around 100 people directly.
The total value of the partnership between Nexus and Stadler, which will include decommissioning of the existing Metro fleet, could rise to £700m over 35 years, through a contract to maintain the new trains for up to 35 years depending on performance.
Stadler will work with more than 30 new UK supply chain partners in the advanced manufacturing, technology and construction sectors, half of them in North East England, creating and securing hundreds of skilled jobs.
The first new trains will be delivered from late 2021/early 2022.
Stadler is building other new trains for Greater Anglia, Merseyrail and the Glasgow subway.