Nexus has invited manufacturers to bid to design, build and maintain a new fleet and depot for the Tyne & Wear Metro.
The process started on June 8. Bidders must respond by July 9, and the plan is to award a contract by the end of 2019. Nexus plans to release formal tender documents at the end of this summer, and the first trains should be delivered by the end of 2021.
“Metro makes a huge contribution to northeast England’s environment and economy, and we have been supported by local businesses, our residents and our politicians in our plans for new rolling stock,” said Nexus Managing Director Tobyn Hughes.
The new trains are expected to have a 35-year life, while the new depot will be built on the site of the existing Gosforth facility in Newcastle.
Nexus is seeking trains with improved passenger flow and reduced dwell times. It wants improved seating layouts, wider doors and stand-back areas, and for the trains to be fully accessible and have luggage space.
The successful bidder will also be responsible for maintaining the current fleet of trains, and ensuring a smooth transition between the old and new fleet.