The Chancellor has used his Budget speech to confirm the coalition Government’s commitment to invest up to £350 million in modernising the Tyne and Wear Metro.
The Rt Hon George Osborne ranked the Metro: all change modernisation programme among a number of transport projects he said provided substantial benefits to the economy.
This means Nexus can go ahead with confidence in its plan to transform the 30-year-old system over the next 11 years.
The commitment means a total of almost £400 million will be invested in modernising trains, stations and the vital infrastructure on which Metro relies – benefiting more than 40 million passengers who use the system every year.
Bernard Garner, Director General of Nexus, said: “We are delighted the Chancellor has recognised, in confirming this investment, the vital role that Metro plays in the economic fortunes of North East England.
“Every pound spent on renewing Metro is worth up to £8 to the local economy in supporting city centre businesses, reducing congestion and driving workforce flexibility.
“Over the next decade Metro: all change modernisation will protect and create hundreds of jobs in the construction, engineering and technology sectors.”
The news comes a day after the first of 90 Metrocars to be refurbished as part of modernisation was moved to Doncaster where a specialist firm will carry out the work.