Terms of reference

The Inquiry aims to establish why the Edinburgh Trams project incurred delays, cost more than originally budgeted and through reductions in scope delivered significantly less than projected. The official terms of reference for the Inquiry are to:

  • Inquire into the delivery of the Edinburgh Trams project (‘the project’), from proposals for the project emerging to its completion, including the procurement and contract preparation, its governance, project management and delivery structures, and oversight of the relevant contracts, in order to establish why the project incurred delays, cost considerably more than originally budgeted for and delivered significantly less than was projected through reductions in scope.
  • Examine the consequences of the failure to deliver the project in the time, within the budget and to the extent projected.
  • Review the circumstances surrounding the project as necessary, in order to report to the Scottish Ministers making recommendations as to how major tram and light rail infrastructure projects of a similar nature might avoid such failures in future.


The Inquiry Team has published an updated list of issues which are being investigated.

The Rt. Honourable the Lord Hardie, Chairman of the Edinburgh Tram Inquiry formally invited members of the public to submit written evidence to the Inquiry in the summer of 2015. The public also had a chance to consider the list of issues and say if there were other issues which they thought the Inquiry should consider.

The online survey developed to collect the evidence and issues was closed on 4 August 2015 and an Analysis of Responses is now available.