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Government to step up focus on light rail

Wed 21 Sep 2011

The government is looking at ways of driving down the cost of deploying light rail networks across the country.

According to Norman Baker, the transport minister, light rail is an environmentally-friendly and popular means of getting around.

However, he noted that many local authorities currently believe investing in the necessary infrastructure is too expensive.

Mr Baker has therefore called on organisations in the sector to collaborate with a view to driving down the cost and making light rail a "more viable option for more communities".

He said rolling out additional light rail networks in Britain would open up a number of "exciting opportunities."

Mr Baker added that the government is "committed" to doing all it can to make this mode of transport a more affordable option.

This comes after a consultation on building a second city line on Manchester's Metrolink network concluded.

Philip Purdy, Metrolink director at Transport for Greater Manchester, said the line would be an "essential" part of the system's "overall expansion".

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