This has been rattling my cage for quite a while now. Do you see anything wrong with this map? I see plenty.
The reason this sprang to mind is that not too long ago, plans were approved to extend the Metrolink in the East to Oldham.
You will note that the Metro services the affluent Southern areas of Manchester such as Altrincham. It also heads North towards Oldham.
Okay. We now have covered a substantial part of the Northwest, to wit: North, South and East (upon Oldham completion). Which compass point are we missing? Yes, West. The current Metro system extends as far East as, yes, you really did see it, Eccles. There are no plans to go any further West.
I could understand it if there were good reasons not to extend it, other than the obvious "Keep out the scousers". In reality, a service West could take in Wigan, St Helens and all places in between. It would radically reduce the congestion on the East Lancs (A580) and the M60. Currently the train and bus services from central Manchester have service levels that are roughly equivalent to a pack llama arriving on the third Sunday of every month, as long as it isn't raining.
To give you some idea as to how fundamentally pants the service levels are, it takes me 55 minutes to travel from Leeds to Manchester (45 miles). It then takes me 2 hours to travel the remaining 10 miles home. A Metrolink to Wigan would cut that last ten miles by at least half.
I think I'm going to hop on the good foot and do the bad thing over on their website and question the logic behind not even proposing an extension West.
Join with me in my jihad on Metrolink.