Trams returned to Bilston Road overnight as the tram track recently installed by the Midland Metro Alliance was tested ahead of the road reopening in both directions on Saturday 2 December.
At midnight, the team had a safety briefing and the overhead lines along this stretch of track were switched on for the first time since June. Shortly afterwards a tram began travelling along Bilston Road as the first element of testing and commissioning the 2.7km of tram track took place.
Testing and commissioning is an important phase of the construction of a tram track and involves running trams out of passenger service along the newly installed track. The Urbos 3 trams drive at low speeds allowing engineers to test the tram in a working environment.
Paul Brown, Project Director for Midland Metro Alliance, said: “Seeing the first tram run along the track that our team has worked so hard to install over the past six months was an extremely exciting moment and very rewarding for all of us at the Midland Metro Alliance. We once again thank everyone in the area for their patience during this essential maintenance project.”
The Midland Metro Alliance’s project on Bilston Road will come to an end when it finishes ahead of schedule on Saturday 2 December 2017 and the A41 reopens in both directions. Testing and commissioning will continue until the tram service to Wolverhampton St. George’s resumes on Sunday 10 December.
As the Bilston Road reopens for traffic from Saturday, buses, including the tram replacement service, will operate along Bilston Road. Customer care staff from National Express, Midland Metro Alliance and Transport for West Midlands will be at key locations over the next two weeks to assist passengers and alert them to changes.