Metrolink: trams absorb nearly one third of TfGM resources
Continued expansion of the light rail network now means Manchester Metrolink accounts for nearly one third of total TfGM gross expenditure.
The annual report for the year ended 31 March 2016 also showed that Transport for Greater Manchester enjoyed a £84.5m surplus (2014/15: £76.4m) on the provision of all its services; but this was only after inclusion of a £150.7m capital grant (2014/15: £142.2m), and a £122.5m revenue grant (2014/15: £121.6m).
Gross expenditure (on trams, trains and buses, etc) came to £342.3m (2014/15: £327.5m); but gross income only amounted to £162.5m (2014/15: £147.7m, the £179.8m shortfall (2014/15: £179.8m) being met through revenue grants.
Metrolink gross expenditure was £106.2m (2014/15: £90.0m) – about twice its gross income of £52.7m (2014/15: £46.9m). Other large TfGM expenditure categories included £28.1m on supported bus services (2014/15: £31.9m); and £56.1m (2014/15: £56.6m) on concessionary schemes. (The latter figure includes support for all public transport modes in the Greater Manchester area).
Metrolink accounted for nearly one third (31.0%) of gross expenditure in 2015/16 as against over just over a quarter (27.5%) in 2014/15; its share of TfGM gross income was 32.4% (2014/15: 31.8%).
Gross expenditure on rail services in 2015/16 amounted to £47.7m (2014/15: £46.4m); these costs were covered by a special £49.5m DfT rail grant (2014/15: £47.9m). Northern Rail was the principal beneficiary.
Most of the revenue support for the non rail services came from a levy imposed on 10 district councils by Greater Manchester Combined Authority (GMCA), namely: Bolton, Bury; Manchester; Oldham; Rochdale; Salford; Stockport; Tameside; Trafford ; & Wigan.
Total TfGM debt remained fairly constant at £72.3m (2014/15: £72.3m), of which £66.0m (2014/15: £71.0m) was long term (redeemable between 2023 and 2035); £17.3m is for Metrolink Phase 2 and becomes due in 2023/24.
Metrolink has been operated by RATP Dev UK (a subsidiary of the French state-owned Paris Metro) since August 2011. Four companies have been shortlisted in the bidding process for the (yet to be awarded) seven year contract to operate and maintain the system from 2017.