Help design the new Metro fleet

Residents interested in helping to design new Metro cars are being invited to have their say.

Sunday, 13th November 2016, 7:50 am
Updated Wednesday, 16th November 2016, 3:32 pm
Tynemouth Metro Station Picture Jane Coltman

Nexus, which owns the system, is looking to get people involved in shaping the design of the new fleets.

They are working with Newcastle University’s Open Lab to host a series of pop-up labs where people can share their experiences of using Metro and ideas for the next generation of Metrocars.

One will take place at Tynemouth Market on Sunday, November 20, from 9am to 4pm.

The current Metrocars have been in use since 1980 and everything from seating layouts to wifi availability will come under scrutiny.

Simon Bowen, who leads the project for Open Lab, said: “In Metro Futures, we want to have a conversation about how future Metrocars can fit the needs of people for decades to come.”

He added: “We’re taking this conversation across the region with a series of pop-up labs where we’re asking people to share what is important about Metro today and explore the Metro of tomorrow.”

Anybody is welcome to share their ideas and experiences at the pop-up labs, whether they are current Metro users or not.

The Metro Futures project aims to include the views of as wide a range of users as possible, from all locations served by Metro and including, for example, wheelchair users, commuters and cyclists.

Huw Lewis, head of customer services at Nexus, said: “We want local people to tell us much as possible about what they want to see from new trains. The pop-up labs put together by Newcastle University’s Open Lab are a fun and informative way for people right across the communities Metro serves to get involved.

“The business case we are submitting to Government for new trains at the end of this year is vital for Metro’s future and we want local people to be at the heart of our plans.”

Alongside the pop-up labs, the website is also a platform for discussion and ideas from the pop-up labs will be posted online so that others can comment on them and add their own contributions.