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ALL ABOARD - MINISTER FOR TRANSPORT HELPS TEST DRIVE NEW TRAM

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On-track and on schedule, the first of Nottingham's new trams rolled ...
On-track and on schedule, the first of Nottingham's new trams rolled

off the production line and onto the test track where it was greeted

by minister for transport John Spellar.

The tram is the first of a fleet of new vehicles being built by

Bombardier Transportation at its factory in Litchchurch Lane, Derby,

as part the Nottingham Express Transit (NET) project, which will take

to the city's streets in November 2003.

Minister for transport John Spellar officially launched the tram

before stepping aboard to ride it for himself along the factory's

test track.

Congratulating the project on its success so far, he said:

'An estimated 11 million passengers are expected to use the NET each

year and I am pleased that I could be one of the first.

'Developing sustainable transport links is vital in tackling

increasing problems of pollution and congestion on our cities'

streets and also getting workers to Nottingham's growing city centre.

'This project will not only help encourage drivers out of their cars,

but also act as a catalyst for the regeneration of areas of

Nottingham most in need, including those areas of high unemployment

being targeted by the New Deal for Communities (NDC).'

The 14km network for phase one of the NET is currently under

construction and on schedule and will run between Hucknall in north

Nottingham and Nottingham Railway Station, crossing the city centre.

On time and on budget, the£180m project has been achieved through

Nottingham's City Council working in partnership with private

consortia the Arrow- light Rail Group, which includes rail-builder

Bombardier, through a private finance initiative (PFI).

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