EDINBURGH TRAM INFO – The network plans
page last updated Q2 2013
FROM THE PAST TO THE FUTURE
THE EDINBURGH TRAM NETWORK
PHASE 1A (AMENDED)
FROM THE PAST TO THE FUTURE
Up until the eventual disbandment in 1956, Edinburgh had a tram network that had grown from its inception in 1871. The Edinburgh Street Tramways Company opened the first Tramway in Edinburgh on 6th November 1871. In 1952 a programme started which was to see the tramway fleet replaced with buses. The last of the old trams ran in November 1956.
In the next 50 years many plans and studies were undertaken to bring different transport solutions to Edinburgh. The suburban line which circled Edinburgh could be reinstated? Introduce a mini tram line in the city centre? Build an underground railway? All without success. Whilst this was taking place some modernising of the bus fleet occurred, the buses changed to one person operation, and bus lanes were introduced. Some local railway stations were improved or opened, mainly for Park & Ride. The citizens of Edinburgh had seen little done to increase the availability of different modes of public transport in Edinburgh during the 50 years since the trams were abandoned.
The latter part of the 20th Century saw a revival of interest in modern trams in Britain, finally catching up with what was occurring across the rest of Europe. Even in England new lines were proposed and built in places like Sheffield, Manchester, Birmingham, Croydon, and Nottingham.
The City of Edinburgh Council, being in charge of the capital of Scotland, with a population of 486,600 and expected to rise to 543,325 by 2030, came to the conclusion following a public consultation between 14th May and 10th July 2003 that a new Tramway network would be built in Edinburgh.
THE EDINBURGH TRAM NETWORK
A three line network was planned.
Loop from St Andrews Square, proceeding along Leith Walk, west to Granton, South to Haymarket and along Princes Street to St Andrews Square. Provision for a depot at Leith was provided. A bus feeder to Western General Hospital was agreed.
The Tram Stops envisaged for Line 1 -
Haymarket; Shandwick Place; Princes Street; St Andrew Square; Broughton Street; McDonald Road; Balfour Street; Duke Street; Links Place; Port of Leith; Ocean Terminal; Newhaven Road; Lower Granton Road; Granton View; Granton Road; Crewe Road West; Pilton; Crewe Toll; Telford Road; Craigleith; Ravelston Dykes; and Roseburn
Haymarket to Edinburgh Airport with a shuttle tram between Edinburgh Airport and Newbridge. To serve central Edinburgh to the western outskirts of the City.
The Tram Stops for Line 2 -
Haymarket; Murrayfield; Balgreen Road; Saughton Road North; South Gyle Access; Edinburgh Park Station; Edinburgh Park; The Gyle; Gogarburn; Ingliston Park & Ride; Airport (and link from Ingliston Park & Ride for a shuttle service) Ingliston West; Ratho Station; Newbridge South; and Newbridge North.
Waverley to Newcraighall via Cameron Toll and the Royal Infirmary.
The Tram Stops for Line 3 -
Waverley Station; High Street; South Bridge; Nicolson Square; St Patrick Square; The Meadows; Newington; Minto Street; Mayfield; Craigmillar Park; Cameron Toll; The Inch; Moredun; Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh / Bio Medipark; Greendykes; Craigmillar; Niddrie; The Wisp; Fort Kinnard; and Newcraighall Station and Park & Ride.
It was planned that all lines would have the potential for extensions depending on passenger demand. E.g. Line 3 had a suggestion of a possible extension from Newcraighall to Todhills.
Line 1 - Public consultation commenced on 14th May 2003 and closed on 10th July 2003. Following careful consideration of the comments a private bill was introduced to the Scottish Parliament on 29th January 2004. The Bill was passed on 29th March 2006 and received Royal Assent on 8th May 2006.
Line 2 –Public consultation was between 14th May and 10th July 2003. The Bill was introduced before the Scottish Parliament on 29th January. The Bill was passed on 22nd March 2006 and received Royal Assent on 27th April 2006.
Line 3 – This proposal was shelved due to initial lack of funding.
Following approval, and the successful private members bills, and with funding agreements in place, preparation works commenced in 2007 to build Lines 1 and 2.
Phase 1a envisaged the line from Edinburgh Airport to Newhaven being completed. This was to incorporate some parts of the approved Line 1 and some parts of Line 2; and see the construction of approximately 18.7km of double track line, and 1.4km of single track line. The Depot will be situated at Gogar. The public running length is approximately 18.4 km. The initial intended date for passenger revenue was February 2011 but this slipped.
The work was programmed in phases with -
Phase 1a – Edinburgh Airport to Newhaven
Phase 1b – Haymarket to Granton via Crewe Toll
Phase 2 – Granton to Newhaven
Phase 3 – the extension of the airport line between Gogarburn and Newbridge.
Preferred bidder status for the main infrastructure contract for the Edinburgh Tram Network was made in June 2007. The contractors were a consortium made up of Bilfinger Berger Civil (UK) and Siemens PLC. A period of 12 months elapsed between preferred bidder stage and the financial closure with agreed contracts in place. The Council set up an arms-length company tie Ltd to manage the project on their behalf.
When the funding was approved costs had increased to £545m (from £375m when initial costs were estimated in 2003). Funding from the Scottish Government is £500m, and the balance of £45m being provided by the City of Edinburgh Council.
The City of Edinburgh Council gave formal approval for the Edinburgh Tram Network on 13th May 2008. The consortium commenced the immobilisation of the sub contractors. Claim disputes were evident from an early stage testing respective parties understanding of the contract terms. Difficulties with the contract were exacerbated by the delays completing the underground services relocation, design changes, and the sub-ground conditions discovered (especially in Princes Street) during the utility diversion works.
Costs and delays started to become evident fairly early on with the construction work. The contractors were promised that the streets would be clear of all utility diversion work by the end of 2008 to allow track laying to take place. Certain changes to the design of the line were incorporated. The arms length company set up to deliver the project, Transport Initiatives Edinburgh (TIE), a wholly owned company set up by the City of Edinburgh Council, were responsible for project managing the construction.
From early 2009 tie Ltd began to test key principles by referring claims to adjudication. It became clear this process would not be easy or straight forward. By 2010 tie Ltd pursued a twin track position of asserting its legal position and attempting to secure a guaranteed price for the Network completion. Failure resulted ultimately to the Council’s Chief Executive being instructed to institute medication talks.
Mediation talks were held at Mar Hall Hotel in Renfrewshire from 8th to 12th March 2011. Agreed terms for a framework, timetable, and process for commercial settlement. It was agreed that if the proposed settlement failed due to lack of available funding, the existing contract would automatically fail.
The recommendation made was to restrict the work to a line between the Airport and St Andrew Square / York Place.
Various Council meeting took place over the next few months. The first item considered was whether they project should be cancelled or not. By June a decision was made to proceed with the Airport to Newhaven part of the Network. All phases apart from the line from the Airport to Newhaven were postponed due to financial problems.
High profile contractual disputes continued to occur. TIE entered into negotiations with the contractors. Negotiations broke down with two differing opinions over interpretation of the wording of the contract that had been drawn up. Mediation concerning the wording of the contract went in favour of the Contractors.
Councillor MacKenzie, (one of the four councillors on the board of TIE) Convener of the Councils Transport, Infrastructure, and Environment Committee went on record “The contract stated that there would be normal design development during the course of the project. The dispute is over whether several hundred design amendments would be expected”. He also conceded that the utility clearance work had not been completed as agreed.
The contractors were bound by a “confidentiality clause” and only one side of the arguments were being aired. Chairmen, Chief Executives, non-executive directors, consultants, of TIE, all came and went. TIE was eventually disbanded and Turner & Townsend took over the management of the project in conjunction with the Council. A new Joint Project Forum to include Bilfinger Berger Civil UK, Siemens, CAF, Lothian Buses, and Transport Scotland (on behalf of the Scottish Government).
After the disbandment of the initial contract with TIE, for the first time, Herr Dr Jochen Keysberg, Chairman Bilfinger Berger Civil, was able to comment publically. He confirmed that many design changes had been made. In addition many of the utility diversions had not been completed, even in areas where TIE stated they had.
The utility diversion work was still not completed in 2013.
The Councillors voted in August 2011 on the various options and decided to go against the recommendations of the Chief Executive of The City of Edinburgh Council and curtail the line from the Airport at Haymarket Station.
When this decision was announced the Scottish Ministers decided that this would be a material change on the basis of the agreed Grant funding. They wrote to the Council stating that no further funding would be given. This would result in £72m of the £500m not being paid.
It was suggested that the Council should rethink the decision and put forward an alternative proposal.
Another Councillors meeting (a special meeting of Councillors) took place on 2nd September 2011 with a recommendation to accept the Chief Executives recommendation again.
PHASE 1A (AMENDED)
It was agreed to build a reduced first Phase 1a of the Edinburgh Tram Network from the Airport to St Andrew Square / York Place. All the political parities expressed their views on the others conduct which was noted in the minutes.
The agreement reached will see a line running from Edinburgh Airport to the city centre, just past St Andrew Square to a terminus in Picardy Place. This is known as Phase 1a. The cost of this much shortened line of 13.4km is £770m, with the dated for revenue service as July 2014. All work completed by the end of 2013.
As a result of the curtailed length, the Council will have 10 extra trams. Due to the unique nature of the trams, disposing or leasing of the extra trams was not possible.
Due to the delay in building the first Phase, and postponing the section to Newhaven, The City of Edinburgh Council obtained “ Orders” (amendments to the original Acts of Parliament) increasing the time available for compulsory land and property acquisitions to complete both the original Lines 1 (by 5 years) and Line 2 (by 10 years), citing that “...it was always envisaged that Line 2 would take longer to construct, so the time periods for the extension reflect that.” It seems the Council do not appreciate that they were in fact constructing what was originally Line 2 in the Act of Parliament which is the line from the Airport to the City Centre.
The route of the first Tram Line construction is basically Phase 1 of the original Line 2.
The tram line will have Stops situated at:-
Ingliston Park & Ride
(Gogar Depot - non public use halt at the Depot)
Edinburgh Gateway *
(This will connect to the train network at a new interchange station under construction between the depot and the Gogar underpass)
Edinburgh Park Central
Edinburgh Park Station **
West End - Princes Street (orginally Shandwick Place)
St Andrew Square
York Place (Picardy Place)
* The Edinburgh Intermodal Gateway Station was a latter addition to the plans for this line. It is a Network Rail Scotland project funded by Transport Scotland on behalf of the Scottish Government. This part of the construction is managed by Network Rail Scotland who are the ultimate clients. The project went to competitive tender via the Official Journal of the European Union in 2012. This station will provide a link for passengers from and to the Fife line and North East Scotland, Passengers will be able to change here and travel to the airport within five minutes.
** Edinburgh Park Station serves the Edinburgh to Glasgow lines. It was officially opened by the then First Minister, Jack McConnell MSP, on 8th December 2003.
The council announced in November 2011 that they were taking legal advice on matters of recourse against Third Parties in relation to the historic failing of the project bearing in mind the Council’s statutory duty of best value and the principals of accountability.
19/11/2015 - City of Edinburgh Council agree in principle that the line will be extended from York Place down Leith Walk, through the docks area to Ocean Terminaland on to Newhaven.
Cost and funding is to be considered further with a view to discovering when the work can proceed.
Please click on any image to view it at a larger scale. You will then be able to navigate forwards and backwards between photos or see them as a slide show.
Full details of the tram line works schedule with distances for the various on street and reserved track can be found by clicking on the link below - "Works Schedule"
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