Above: Higher economic acitivty near a tram line due to trams
See Also: https://bathtrams.uk/cms/wp-content/uploads/2018/12/What-trams-do-for-cities-David-Walmsely.pdf
And: UKTram – “Investigation into the economic impacts on cities of investment in
light rail systems – https://pdfroom.com/books/an-investigation-into-the-economic-impacts-of-cities-of-investment-in-light-rail-schemes/3wW5mjmkdYo
Croydon Tram Link – Academic analysis of benefits of Croydon Tram:
Below – extract from Economic and regeneration impacts of
1.14 Impact on businesses
The majority of businesses in the Croydon area regard Tramlink as having a
positive impact on their business, helping to raise their profile, increasing
customer numbers and business activity.
Tramlink is most visible in Croydon and has brought renewed confidence to
the area. It is evidence that major changes can occur at a local level and
represents a strong marketing tool to convey Croydon as a place with drive,
ambition and a “Can do” philosophy. Major developments are now taking
Tramlink into account and high profile office based employers have recently
moved in, quoting high accessibility as a key factor in their choice.
Whilst the retail sector was negatively impacted during the construction
period, footfall in Croydon centre was supported by Tramlink during major retail
redevelopment. In addition contrary to initial fears, it has not generated a drift of
shoppers to Croydon at the expense of other centres along the route.
1.15 Conclusion and lessons for future systems
As expected Tramlink’s impacts as perceived by stakeholders are varied and
very difficult to quantify. However it is clear that it has had the following
• Radically improved orbital access across South London;
• Markedly raised the profile of Croydon but not other centres served by the
• Assisted in attracting high profile inward investors to Croydon;
Urban Transport X, C. A. Brebbia & L. C. Wadhwa (Editors)
© 2004 WIT Press, www.witpress.com, ISBN 1-85312-716-7
880 Urban Transport X
• Facilitated some commercial development along the route;
• Attracted young professionals to the area leading to a slight increase in
• Made recruitment marginally easier and improved productivity through
• Improved the job prospects of the unemployed residents of New Addington;
• Improved the accessibility of the mobility impaired and socially excluded
especially in New Addington and to a lesser extent at Phipp’s Bridge;
• Maintained footfall in central Croydon during major retail redevelopment;
• Enabled the upgrading of a number of retail outlets within Croydon; and
• Benefited the residents of the areas it served broadly in line with their age
and gender, that is, the benefits have not been biased towards any particular
It has, however, had less of an impact on other centres such as Wimbledon
but it has not led to the downturn of smaller centres which was a concern when
the system was being planned and built.
To maximise the benefits of future systems, besides ensuring that it offers a
high quality transport service and integrates to other transport systems, the areas
to be served need to ensure that:
• They use the goodwill and feel good factors generated by new light rail/tram
schemes to aggressively market their areas;
• Training schemes are put in place to enable residents to take up the
employment opportunities that become available to them through improved
• The system is highly visible and associated stops are of a high quality; and
• Planning policies facilitate appropriate residential and commercial
developments around tram stops.
” 4.7 Light rail’s advantages over the bus alternative are reflected in the much higher levels of modal shift that light rail achieves. As set out in para 3.2, peak hour transfer from car to tram is consistently around 20%. This compares with estimates of between 4% and 6.5% resulting from significant improvements to bus corridors. Finally, as the SDG report shows, improvements to bus services (often perceived as potentially temporary) do not have the same catalytic effect on urban regeneration and city image that can be triggered by the tangible and permanent commitment to an area that light rail represents.
Metrolink has helped to create the modern Greater Manchester city-region by driving regeneration and employment in the areas it serves.
Last year saw a record-breaking 37 million passenger journeys and that number is continually growing.
See also: https://bathtrams.uk/5756-2/
Trams are great for city transport – why doesn’t the UK have more?
and can help underpin neighborhood regeneration projects.
“Think of trams as an urban development project rather than a transport scheme,” says Martin Wedderburn, Transport Planner and Associate for thinktank the Centre for London. “The physical permanence of the rails has a much bigger impact on developers and investors, especially in the UK where bus routes can be changed or withdrawn at such short notice.”
Yet while light-rail use in England is at record highs of 268 million journeys, the highest since records began in 1983, they make up
What light rail can do for cities: