Manchester Metrolink - Manchester Metrolink Frequencies - D

Manchester Metrolink - D
Manchester Metrolink Frequencies
Before the inauguration, GMPTE's original concept was for Metrolink's operator to provide a service every ten minutes from Bury to Piccadilly and Altrincham to Piccadilly from 6 am to midnight, Monday to Saturday. Greater Manchester Metro Limited, the system's original operator, argued for adjustments, citing the need to provide an efficient and commercially viable operation in line with vehicle running times and passenger demand.
Due to power limitations, this pattern was modified to a twelve-minute service throughout the day, doubling to a six-minute service in peak periods, resulting in a "ten trams per hour" service pattern on routes running from Altrincham and Bury to Manchester every six minutes. Operators are required to provide this level of service at least 98% of the time or incur a financial penalty charge. This six-minute service pattern has been adopted on the rest of the network as the system has grown.
Heavy snowfall during the winter of 2009/10 impaired Metrolink services and the operator was criticised for failing to have cold weather procedures. This prompted a programme to improve the reliability and performance of the system in freezing conditions. Metrolink operated icebreaker-style vehicles at night during snowfall in January 2013 to provide standard services.
In January 2016, Transport for Greater Manchester agreed on a baseline Service Specification to grade bidders seeking to operate the concession from July 2017, once the Second City Crossing is in operation. In the baseline service pattern, there are no designated 'peak' periods of service operation, instead, there will be an 'enhanced' service operating from start of service to 8 pm Monday to Friday, and to 6 pm Saturday, and a 'core' service running at all other times.
In the 'enhanced' service pattern, trams will run with a 6-minute frequency to Shaw & Oldham, Bury, Ashton, Altrincham, Manchester Airport and East Didsbury, and with a 12-minute frequency to Rochdale, Eccles and MediacityUK. When the Trafford line opens, services will run to the Trafford Centre with a 12-minute frequency. In the 'core' service pattern, all lines will run with a 12-minute frequency.
Manchester Metrolink Daytime Services
The following services run 07:15–19:30 on weekdays and 09:30–18:00 on Saturdays.
Nine services which run every 12 minutes:
  •      Altrincham – Bury
  •      Altrincham – Piccadilly
  •      Ashton-under-Lyne – Eccles
  •      Etihad Campus – MediaCityUK (Withdrawn indefinitely due to COVID 19 pandemic)
  •      Bury – Piccadilly
  •      East Didsbury – Rochdale Town Centre
  •      East Didsbury – Shaw and Crompton
  •      The Trafford Centre – Deansgate-Castlefield
  •      Manchester Airport – Victoria
Thus the combined frequency for some routes is at least every 6 minutes, if not higher.
Manchester Metrolink All-Day Services
The following services run all day from 06:00 until 23:30 on Mondays to Thursdays, and from 06:00 until 00:30 on Fridays and Saturdays, and from 07:00 – 22:30 on Sundays and bank holidays.
Six services which all run every 12 minutes:
  •      Altrincham – Piccadilly
  •      Ashton-under-Lyne – Eccles (via MediaCityUK outside Mon–Sat daytime hours)
  •      Bury – Piccadilly
  •      East Didsbury – Rochdale Town Centre
  •      The Trafford Centre – Deansgate-Castlefield
  •      Manchester Airport – Victoria
Manchester Metrolink Early Morning Service
The early morning service operates from 03:00–06:00 Monday to Saturday and 03:00–07:00 on Sundays and bank holidays.
One service which runs every 20 minutes:
  •      Manchester Airport – Deansgate-Castlefield
This is mostly to support airport shift workers and people with early flights.
These services were removed in March 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. As of February 2023 there are no plans to reintroduce this service.
Services during COVID-19 pandemic
Due to changing travel patterns as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, advice is against all but essential travel. Thus Metrolink have temporarily introduced a reduced timetable, with trams running every 20 minutes on the following lines only. In September 2020 with more people returning to work and social activities there is now a 10-minute frequency operating Monday – Friday and at some service at the weekend.
The 10 minute frequency has also led to double units being used on most workings:
The 6 minute service was reintroduced on 5 July 2021, although temporarily removed in August 2021 due the number of staff having to self isolate. The Altrincham to Bury direct services resumed on Tuesday 31 August with the Shaw to East Didsbury services on Monday 6 September 2021.
  •      Altrincham – Piccadilly
  •      Ashton-under-Lyne – Eccles (via MediaCityUK)
  •      Bury – Piccadilly
  •      East Didsbury – Rochdale Town Centre
  •      The Trafford Centre – Deansgate-Castelfield
  •      Manchester Airport – Victoria
Manchester Metrolink Overview
Manchester Metrolink Owner: Transport for Greater Manchester
Manchester Metrolink Locale: Greater Manchester
Manchester Metrolink Transit Type: Tram/Light rail
Manchester Metrolink Number of Lines: 8
Manchester Metrolink Number of Stations: 99
Manchester Metrolink Annual Ridership: 36.0 million (2022/23)
Manchester Metrolink Increase: 38.5%
Manchester Metrolink Chief Executive: Danny Vaughan (TfGM Metrolink Director)
Manchester Metrolink Headquarters: Metrolink Trafford Depot
Warwick Road South
M16 0GZ
Manchester Metrolink Began Operation: 6 April 1992, 31 years ago
Manchester Metrolink Operator(s): KeolisAmey Metrolink Ltd.
Number of Vehicles: 147 Bombardier M5000
Manchester Metrolink Train Length: 28.4 metres (93 ft)
Manchester Metrolink System Length: 64 miles (103 km)
Manchester Metrolink Track Gauge: 4 ft 8+1⁄2 in (1,435 mm) standard gauge
Manchester Metrolink Minimum Radius of Curvature: 25 m (82 ft)
Manchester Metrolink Electrification: 750 V DC overhead line
Manchester Metrolink Top Speed: 50 miles per hour (80 km/h)
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