The new owners of the Merry Hill shopping centre have confirmed their intention to make a major financial contribution to the planned Midland Metro tram extension from Wednesbury to Brierley Hill.
Australian-property conglomerate Westfield, which acquired Merry Hill earlier this year, said it was fully behind the promise made by the centre's previous owners to pay up to £35 million towards the new Black Country route.
The commitment is good news for Centro, the passenger transport executive, which is yet to sign a formal funding agreement with Westfield.
Centro was unable to complete a deal with Chelsfield, the centre's former owners, because final Government approval for the seven-mile tram extension has only recently been given.
The contribution from Merry Hill represents a significant proportion of the £139 million cost of the new line, which will run through Dudley. Remaining funding will come from a combination of Government and council investment.
Peter Miller, Westfield development director, said: "We are very supportive and we really want to make this happen."