Exchange Square tram stop reopens next week, but disruption continues

Date published: 10 February 2024

The Exchange Square tram stop will reopen next week after being closed for weeks — but services won’t return to normal just yet.

A cracked rail meant East Didsbury-Rochdale Town Centre and East Didsbury-Shaw and Crompton trams had to be rerouted from the usual route of heading down Cross Street, from Exchange Square up to St Peter’s Square. That line, called the ‘second city crossing’ was put out of action from January 22.

However, Metrolink bosses have announced that from Monday (12 February), Exchange Square will reopen, but services will still not go back to normal. East Didsbury-Rochdale trams will still go via Market Street, as they have done while the second city crossing was suspended.

Bosses have also announced that ‘the East Didsbury-Shaw and Crompton service will operate between East Didsbury and Exchange Square only’. They have however added more double-trams to cope with demand from the city centre towards Rochdale.

“From start of service on Monday 12 February, Exchange Square tram stop will reopen, and the East Didsbury-Shaw and Crompton service will operate between East Didsbury and Exchange Square only,” an update on Transport for Greater Manchester’s website said.

“The East Didsbury-Rochdale Town Centre service will continue to operate via Market Street, Shudehill and Victoria. There will be no peak service between Shaw and Crompton-Exchange Square.

“There will be additional double trams on the East Didsbury-Rochdale Town Centre service every day from the start until end of service to make sure all customers can continue to travel as they usually would.”

It added that there will be no change in the frequency of trams from East Didsbury towards town, but there will be a drop in the number of services from Shaw & Crompton heading to the city centre.

Bosses say they’ve altered the services ‘to reduce congestion in Manchester city centre because of more trams calling at Market Street and Shudehill’. It means ‘journey times and the number of delays across the whole tram network should decrease’, they added.

The altered service will be in place until further notice.

Ethan Davies, Local Democracy Reporter

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