Plans for a new Metrolink line to the Trafford Centre will be discussed by transport leaders on Friday.
A report to the Transport for Greater Manchester Committee outlines the 5.5km route and will be used to assess the budget required and accompanying business case for the line, which will be linked to the existing Metrolink network at the Pomona stop.
The line will run alongside the Manchester Ship Canal before following Trafford Wharf Road and Warren Bruce Road and then running through the Village area of Trafford Park.
It will then cross Parkway Circle and the Bridgewater Canal before terminating at the Trafford Centre.
While stop names are to be determined, they are planned to be close to key facilities, including Wharfside for Old Trafford, the Imperial War Museum North, Trafford Park Village, Parkway, EventCity and the Trafford Centre.
Cllr Andrew Fender, chairman of the TfGM Committee, said: "This is an important step on the road to delivering this new line, which would be a fantastic addition to what is already a flagship centre for business and tourism.
"The route has evolved over time and better reflects how the area it would serve has developed – and continues to develop – since an original set of plans were approved back in 2001.
"There is a great deal of work ahead of us before we can start to think of shovels hitting the ground, but I'm really pleased that it is building momentum and I look forward to more progress being made in the coming months and years."
The Trafford Centre line will be the subject of public consultation next year, ahead of a formal application being made to government for a Transport & Works Act Order that would give TfGM the statutory powers needed to construct and operate the line.
Securing the powers would allow construction to start once funding for the project has been confirmed.
Discussions will take place with the Government to that end over the coming months, with updates to the Greater Manchester Combined Authority to follow.
The GMCA has already approved the initial funding required to get the scheme "shovel ready", including an order for 10 new trams to serve the line at a cost of around £2m a vehicle.