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Work starts on Tyne & Wear Metro extension

The Deputy Prime Minister John Prescott launched work on the extension to the north east's Metro system to Sunderland.

Launching the work in Sunderland on Friday 25th February Mr Prescott said:

"These are three - but very important - steps in the right direction for local communities. When we launched our 10-year-plan for transport last December we said it would take a decade to turn around the years of under-investment in Britain's transport network.

"Projects like this one in Sunderland ... show that we can successfully use a range of solutions to tackle difficult local problems.

"These are real, practical steps that will make a real difference to people's everyday lives by giving them the sort of modern, linked transport system they need and deserve. Modern integrated transport systems are about improving our daily lives."

The extension of the Metro to Sunderland, which involves joint running of light & heavy rail will take two years and cost GBP100m, with cash coming from a public-private partnership. It will directly link the two city centres of Newcastle and Sunderland as well as new stations at Sunderland University and Sunderland Football Club's Stadium of Light.

26 February 2000

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