Subway moves forward

SPT chairman Jonathan joined government ministers Alex Neil and Nicola Sturgeon to celebrate the funding announcement along with MSP Sandra White.
SPT chairman Jonathan joined government ministers Alex Neil and Nicola Sturgeon to celebrate the funding announcement along with MSP Sandra White.

SOUTHSIDE commuters are set to receive a boost following a £246 million cash injection into Glasgow’s ageing subway system from the Scottish government.

SPT are set to contribute a further £41.5 million to redevelop all 15 stations, install new driverless trains and improve disabled access.

A smartcard ticketing system — a more advanced version of the London oyster card — will also be added.

Glasgow southside MSP Nicola Sturgeon told The Extra: “The Clockwork Orange is a Glasgow institution and this quarter of a billion of support from the Scottish Government will make it fit for the future.

“The success of our cities is central to the wider economic success of Scotland — so it is vital cities like Glasgow feel all of the benefits that strategic infrastructure investment on key transport links can bring.

“That is why we have delivered the new M74 and M80 motorways, and why we are improving rail infrastructure in and out of Glasgow from the east and west through major strategic rail improvement projects.

“It is also why we are providing £40m of funding towards the Fastlink scheme which when delivered, will provide a quick, efficient link between the SECC, Glasgow’s city centre and the new Southern General hospital.”

The news of the first revamp of the service since the 1970s was announced by SPT chair, councillor Jonathan Findlay.

He said: “Massive changes are coming down the line for the subway and we’ve already committed millions to station upgrades, new escalators and smart card ticket technology as well as behind the scenes repairs to tunnels and track beds.

“Tendering for the new bespoke driverless trains, and signalling which could improve how often our trains run, has already begun and we’ve received submissions from world class firms.

“Working practices are also being addressed to make the subway’s operation more flexible and we are fully aware of the challenges that lie ahead”.

Modernisation work is underway at Hillhead and similar work will begin on Partick and Kelvinhall stations, with Ibrox next on the list.

All three will be completed by the time Glasgow hosts the Commonwealth Games in 2014.

The Glasgow Subway, opened on December 14 1896, is the third oldest underground metro in the world, after the London underground and the Budapest metro. Almost 30,000 people use the service daily.