LRTA logo Light Rail Transit Association
Light Rail for better public transport

Victoria station roof and Metrolink stop upgrade

above: New Roof
below: Platform Level
Pictures Courtesy of TfGM

Work on a major, multi–million pound transformation of the Manchester Victoria Metrolink stop started on Friday, 21 February 2014. Network Rail also upgraded their station, including a new roof over Metrolink and the bay platforms.

The stop has been rebuilt, with a new layout for phase 3b and the Second City Centre Crossing. There are two double sided platforms with three tracks, allowing the airport line turnback arrangements.

To do this project safely, no trams stopped at Victoria and there were temporary changes to Metrolink services for the duration. Victoria Metrolink stop re–opened in February 2015

Victoria station formally re–opened on 6 October 2015.

From Sunday 28 January 2018 the Victoria turn–back, inner faces of island platforms, is in use. Airport line services reverse here. Through services continue to use the outer faces of both island platforms.

First stage — from Friday 21 February to Sunday 23 February 2014 inclusive

There were no trams through Victoria. The following tram services operated: Bury — Abraham Moss; Rochdale — Central Park; Eccles — Ashton via MediaCityUK; Altrincham — Piccadilly; East Didsbury — Piccadilly.

Replacement buses operated: Crumpsall to Shudehill and Piccadilly; Central Park to Shudehill and Piccadilly.

Following stages

Trams passed non–stop; through Victoria in both directions on a single line of track, maximising the number of trams that could run. Shudehill, the next city centre stop is just a short walk for connections with Victoria’s rail services and the Manchester Arena.

Metrolink services also changed for the duration of the work:

Monday 24 February to Friday 27 June 2014

A left–hand turnout was installed at the higher (Shudehill Interchange) end of Balloon Street. This connected the inbound track to the outbound track and the single line used the original outbound track through Victoria. Inbound trams used the existing facing cross–over east of Cheetham Hill Road Bridge.

Saturday 28 June to Tuesday 1 July 2014

Temporary track has been installed on the lower end of Balloon Street, connecting outbound and inbound lines. The single line uses this to access the the new inbound cross–city one track across Corporation Street and into Victoria, where it is on the new inbound alignment. Another left–hand turnout has been installed east of the bridge over Red Bank. The connection to Millgate sidings has been removed for the duration.

Wednesday 2 July 2014 to Friday 13 February 2015

The single line used this revised alignment.

Saturday 14 to Tuesday 17 February 2015

No services ran to or through Victoria. Bury trams ran to Crumpsall with shuttle bus between Crumpsall and Shudehill & Piccadilly Gardens. Oldham and Rochdale trams ran to Central Park with replacement buses running between Central Park, Monsall, Shudehill & Piccadilly Gardens. On the south side; Altrincham to Piccadilly, East Didsbury to Piccadilly, Eccles to Ashton (via MediaCityUK) and Manchester Airport to Cornbrook.

Wednesday 17 to Friday 20 February 2015

Bury also Oldham and Rochdale trams ran Victoria, reversed and returned northwards.

Saturday 21 February 2015 onwards

Through services are now stopping at Victoria using the southern island platform; this is the one furthest from main line platforms.

Sunday 6 December 2015 onwards

Metrolink Exchange Square to Victoria opened on 6 December 2015. Services are now stopping at Victoria using the outer faces of both island platforms.

Sunday 28 January 2018 onwards

Victoria turn–back, inner faces of island platforms, in use. Airport line services reverse here. Through services continue to use the outer faces of both island platforms.

Single Line Working

A variation on Staff and Ticket operation was used. Contractor’s staff were positioned at both Shudehill stop and east of Victoria; they had communication with Metrolink Control who could see the overall position. Control instructed the ground staff on which trams to send through. The usual sequence of operation was two services pass in one direction and then two in the other, this maximised throughput. Drivers were shown the staff and given verbal authority to proceed, with the last tram in each direction carrying the staff to the other end.

Victoria upgrade: top of page

This page was written by Tony Williams. Contact if you have any comments, ideas or suggestions about these pages.