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Blackpool's £100m tram upgrade approved

The £100 million upgrade of Blackpool’s 120 year old tramway has been approved and funding has been confirmed by transport minister Sadiq Khan.

The total investment amounts to £68.3 million from the Department for Transport and £33.4 million from the local council.

Work on the traditional tramway will include replacing 8 km of track, accessibility improvements, tram priority at junctions, a new depot and the purchase of 16 Bombardier Flexity 2 trams.

BAM Nuttall will handle the track replacement – to be completed by Easter 2012 - while Volker Fitzpatrick has been chosen to build a £20 million tram depot at Starr Gate.

Mr. Khan said: “Trams have been running in Blackpool for over 100 years - I hope this funding will mean the historic, world-famous Tramway can continue to run well into the future,” he said.

The tramway, which is owned by Blackpool Council, has been operating since 1885.