THE firm behind the Jeddah Metro in Saudi Arabia and the Time Warmer Building in Manhattan has been chosen as a project manager for the £145m Edinburgh Trams extension.

Turner and Townsend are part of £1m-plus advisers team, also including the leading designers and consultants Atkins, appointed to ensure smooth running of new tram line proposals including making sure utility companies won’t have to repeat roadworks and that legal wrangles don’t halt the project.

Edinburgh City Council said it agreed to set in motion ground work for "a number of activities to progress the development of a tram extension to Newhaven in Leith".

A report to the finance and resources committee reveals a project team including "legal, technical and project and commercial management advisors who would support the council in completing the activities and reporting back to Committee in summer 2017 on the progress and next steps".

The report to the committee stated: "This report details the procurement processes undertaken and the outcome of the process which led to the appointments of Ashurt LLP as Legal Advisors, Atkins Ltd as Technical Advisors and Turner and Townsend as Project and Commercial Management advisors for contract sums of £111,872, £449,710 and £617,705 respectively."

The trams started running in 2014 after six years of disruption in the Scottish capital.

The project cost £776 million. The original cost was £545m and the first trams arrived three years late.

Roadworks were repeatedly re-done and a legal wrangle with the mian contractor halted the project all together at one stage.

Alasdair Rankin, Finance and Resources Convener, said: “The team of advisors we have appointed for this stage of the potential tram extension development bring significant experience from UK and international light rail projects.

"We are working with the advisory team to develop a robust business case which will be a matter for the new administration to consider following the Council elections on May 4.”