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10 February 2019, 09:00
Tram tracks are being laid in Birmingham City Centre for the Westside tram extension, due to start running by the end of 2019.
This is the first phase, due to run from Grand Central to Centenary Square, carrying visitors to key destinations like Birmingham Museum
and Art Gallery and Symphony Hall.
The second phase is due to end by 2021 and will travel along Broad Street to Edgbaston Five Ways.
The tram tracks laid in Victoria Square at the beginning of Febraury, are the first to be installed in the city centre since 2015, when the extension from Snow Hill to Grand Central was being built.
West Midlands Mayor Andy Street and Transport Minister Jesse Norman MP were at the installation of the tracks in Birmingham, Andy Street
spoke to Capital Reports
#LISTEN West Mids Mayor @andy4wm spoke to #CapitalReports as the first tram tracks for the region's tram extension start in Birmingham's Victoria Square. He told us it's a great long-term project for the city pic.twitter.com/GM9liGDA14— Capital Brum News (@CapitalBIRNews) February 10, 2019
The tram project is part of a £1.35 billion expansion of the region's light rail over the next decade.
The new lines will serve Birmingham, the Black Country and Solihull.
How the Midland Metro will shape up the West Midlands
Birmingham Westside extension: phase one to Centenary Square to open by end of 2019. Phase two to Edgbaston Five Ways and 54 Hagley Road set to open in 2021.
Birmingham Eastside extension: Bull Street to HS2 station and Digbeth. Plans in development.
Wednesbury to Brierley Hill extension : 11km route serving Tipton, Dudley and Merry Hill due to be running by 2023.
Wolverhampton City Centre extension: trams will run along Pipers Row to the new interchange at the redeveloped Wolverhampton Railway Station. Due to open in 2020.