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Edinburgh Trams – A streetcar named inspire

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Edinburgh Trams has turned a profit – two years earlier than anticipated.

The light rail system, owned by the city of Edinburgh, notched up a £252,000 pre-tax profit on its electrified, low-platform, balance sheet.

Says Edinburgh Trams managing director Lea Harrison, ‘We’re delighted with these results and they firmly reflect the growing popularity of the tram. Over the past year, we’ve seen patronage increase by 10 per cent and revenue rise by 12 per cent. These encouraging figures have been driven by our move to increase the frequency of trams combined with our ongoing commitment to exceptional service.’

Passenger satisfaction is at an astonishing 99 per cent. All this has been achieved in two years.

Says Lesley Macinnes, Transport Convener for the city council, ‘These are fantastic figures, demonstrating how popular trams have become. It’s especially welcome news so soon after the capital’s trams were nationally recognised for having the highest customer satisfaction rating of any public transport operator in the UK. Full credit to everyone at Edinburgh Trams for the sterling job they’re doing.’

The original business model for the tram network predicted the first positive returns would arrive in 2018 and forecasted a pre- tax loss of £170,000 for the year ending December 2016. The Scottish capital’s streetcar success story hosts over 5.6 million passenger journeys a year. The runaway success story of Edinburgh Trams should inspire further light rail developments.

Photo: cornfield / Shutterstock.com.