Freight Tram Trials in St. Etienne France

The concept of freight trams has been around for a while, in fact the concept is quite old.

The success of Dresden’s freight tram was based on moving car components, via container, from one factory to another across the city. In St. Etienne, it’s the concept of moving smaller loads from one central distribution point outside the city centre to smaller ones inside the city, taking delivery trucks off congested roads.

Certainly in metro Vancouver, the concept of freight trams could find many good uses, from deliveries along Broadway to a fast “parcels” service from Chilliwack to Vancouver.

The ability for LRT to adapt to new situations, sadly, goes completely unrecognized by TransLink, regional politicians and the provincial government.

Thinking out of the box is just not comprehended by TransLink.

Pity.

Freight tram trial delivers for retailer

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Freight tram trial delivers for retailer TramFret

A French project to develop a concept for freight operations on light rail networks reached a milestone on the morning of June 13, when a tram was used to deliver merchandise to a retailer in St Etienne.

The trial delivery to the Casino store in Place Carnot was organized as part of the TramFret project, an initiative led by research and development institute Efficacity, which is being supported by St Etienne public transport operator Stas.

Special authorization was granted for the trial by STRMTG, the national agency responsible for tramway safety.

TramFret says the trial will enable it to optimize the system, begin industrial development of the concept, and study its sustainability.

If the first phase of the trial is successful further testing will be carried out in St Etienne in the coming weeks.

St Etienne TramFret LARGE

Comments

2 Responses to “Freight Tram Trials in St. Etienne France”
  1. Haveacow says:

    My only issue is how customers access their packages and cargos. Is there a yard or building for pick up or will it have secondary vehicle and or vendor to do door to door service.

  2. Steve Cooley says:

    Sounds like an alternative to trucks delivering goods and materials from a wholesaler to a retailer. I assume these trams would share their rails with commuter trams. How would freight trams be able to stop and deliver goods without getting in the way of commuter trams? Would or could there be a freight car on each commuter tram?

    Zwei replies: It is called a switch and a siding, pricey, but not overwhelmingly expensive. Unlike SkyTrian, LRT is very flexible in operation. I would think a freight tram to UBC would be very successful.

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