Manchester trains deal could transform six stations including Piccadilly, Victoria, Oxford Road and Deansgate

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It comes after mayor Andy Burnham asked the government for full control of all train stations across Greater Manchester.

A new deal which could lead to big changes at six Greater Manchester train stations has been agreed. Local and national transport bodies have joined forces to come up with a plan for the stations in Manchester and Salford.

It comes after mayor Andy Burnham asked the government for full control of all train stations across Greater Manchester, complaining about a lack of investment in the city centre’s ‘dangerous’ and ’embarrassing’ stations. He argued that local leaders would make better use of the land in and around stations, suggesting flats and offices could be built to ‘maximise their value’.

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Manchester Piccadilly is one of the stations involved in the planManchester Piccadilly is one of the stations involved in the plan
Manchester Piccadilly is one of the stations involved in the plan | TfGM

Earlier this year, the government agreed to give the city-region more influence over local rail services in a new devolution deal which committed to ‘better integrate’ them with Greater Manchester’s London-style Bee Network. This means passengers would be able to tap-in and tap-out to pay for local trains.

The ‘trailblazer’ agreement also committed to working together to identify regeneration and development opportunities in and around train stations to ‘increase commercial income’. This week, Transport for Greater Manchester and Network Rail announced a new partnership to deliver a ‘joint vision’ for Manchester and Salford’s central train stations over the next 12 months.

The collaboration agreement, which is the first of its kind between the two organisations, aims to make Greater Manchester better connected and establish future regeneration opportunities at train stations. They also hope to ‘attract partners for delivery of future projects’ through the new partnership.

Eamonn Boylan, Chief Executive of TfGM; Lord Hendy, Chair of Network Rail; Steve Warrener, Managing Director of TfGM.Eamonn Boylan, Chief Executive of TfGM; Lord Hendy, Chair of Network Rail; Steve Warrener, Managing Director of TfGM.
Eamonn Boylan, Chief Executive of TfGM; Lord Hendy, Chair of Network Rail; Steve Warrener, Managing Director of TfGM. | TfGM

The two organisations will work with key stakeholders and future partners on proposals affecting six stations: Manchester Piccadilly, Manchester Victoria, Manchester Oxford Road, Deansgate, Salford Central and Salford Crescent. They will focus on transport upgrades that will help the city-region meet the demands of future population growth and support the regional economy.

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Greater Manchester transport commissioner Vernon Everitt added: “The ever-changing skylines across Salford and Manchester city centres reflect the extent to which Greater Manchester is growing.

“As we deliver our Bee Network plans for a truly integrated network, it is vital our rail stations – and surrounding areas – evolve to meet these demands, and this new partnership signifies our joint commitment alongside Manchester and Salford districts to delivering a modernised railway that puts passengers and local communities at its heart.”

Network Rail chair Lord Peter Hendy said: “This is a landmark moment for Manchester and Salford, to see our two organisations build a partnership team to make the best of our resources and expertise. Working jointly with the local authorities we are putting passengers and rail services at the forefront of infrastructure investment and wider neighbourhood improvements.”

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