The main stop on the Metrolink system is located underneath Manchester Piccadilly railway station. From here trams depart every few minutes travelling to Piccadilly Gardens where there is a major bus interchange and then they head out either through the city centre towards Altrincham or Eccles in one direction or towards Bury in the other. Altrincham and Eccles trams start and terminate at Piccadilly, whilst those heading for Bury start and terminate at Ashton-under-Lyne. On Mondays-Saturdays there is also a direct service linking Altrincham and Bury, which bypasses Piccadilly Gardens and Piccadilly station altogether. There are two other services, one between Rochdale Town Centre and East Didsbury via Manchester Victoria station, the other between Cornbrook and Manchester Airport.
For the purposes of clarity, we have shown all six routes: from Piccadilly to Altrincham, from Piccadilly to Eccles, from Altrincham to Bury, from Ashton-under-Lyne to Bury, from Rochdale Town Centre to East Didsbury and from Cornbrook to Manchester Airport.
Metrolink has now virtually completed its major expansion programme. The final route to open around 2017 will be a second route through central Manchester; at which time, trams from the airport will then continue from Cornbrook on through the city centre and beyond.
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© 2013 Terry Robinson and Chris Cook