Train maker Bombardier will supply another 14 light rail vehicles for Manchester's Metrolink system.
This option forms part of the contract signed with Greater Manchester Passenger Transport Executive (GMPTE) in April 2007 and is valued at £27m. Bombardier’s share amounts to about £20m.
Philip Purdy, GMPTE’s Metrolink director, said: “We are pleased to be ordering a further 14 vehicles in addition to the trams already on order, and of course those that have now been delivered are successfully serving the existing Metrolink lines, playing an important part in making services more robust.
“This is a historic moment for Greater Manchester’s Metrolink network, as we’re expanding the system to be almost treble the size that it is today, and these new trams are a crucial part of delivering that project. I look forward to seeing our new vehicles arrive in due course.”
Bombardier received its first order from GMPTE in April 2007 for 12 trams and this contract included an option for GMPTE to order up to 97 vehicles. Today’s order for 14 vehicles brings the total number of trams ordered from the consortium for Manchester to date up to 62 light rail vehicles.
The first of these additional 14 vehicles is scheduled to be delivered to Manchester in October 2011.
Colin S Walton, chairman of Bombardier Transportation, UK, said: “We are delighted to continue our long and successful partnership with GMPTE, helping to improve the attractiveness of public transport services in and around Manchester.”
Overall Bombardier now has more than 2,800 trams and light rail vehicles operating or on order in cities across Europe, Australia and North America. Its revenues for the fiscal year ended January 2010 were $19.4bn. Bombardier Transportation employs around 4,500 people at production facilities in Derby and Plymouth.
The company narrowly missed out in February 2009 on a £7.5bn Department of Transport contract to build the UK’s next generation of high-speed trains. The contract, now on hold, was awarded instead to a consortium of companies called Agility Trains, which comprised Hitachi, John Laing and Barclays Bank.