TramTrain For 2021!

Zwei has been a member of the Light Rail Transit Association for over 35 years and with membership comes a subscription to the most excellent magazine Tramways & Urban Transit.

The following will be of most interest for those wanting an affordable rail connection from Vancouver to Chilliwack using the existing and former BC Electric passenger line connecting to Chilliwack or reinstating passenger service on the E&N Railway.

Today six years after the this article was published in T&UT much has happened with TramTrain. today there are over 30 TramTrain systems operating around the world, with a further 30 plus systems being planned.

TramTrain is evolving ad with newer, Greener propulsion systems and cheaper and safer signalling systems, TramTrain is no longer a niche transit system, but a safe, affordable and user friendly transit mode, that can expand ones transit system into lower population areas, providing an efficient and cost effective public transport service.

There are several candidates for a TramTrain service in BC, yet the provincial government and civic politicians still want massively expensive and financially ruinous extensions to the current light metro system as they love to cut ribbons in front of mega-projects at election time.

The time has come to seriously consider TramTrain in BC, but I am afraid Horgan and the NDP the affordable transit train has long left the station.

 

From Tramways & Urban Transit

Tram-train / JUNE 2014

www.tramnews.net.www.lrta.org

TRAM-TRAIN:A PROMISE UNFULFILLED?

Micheal Taplin

Prologue

“On 25 September 1992 dual-voltage LRVs began running between Karlsruheand Bretten… within a year passenger numbers were up 400%, and today the model works over nearly 500km (310 miles) of track.”

TramTrain and regional passenger train at station.

During 125 years of electric tramways, the tram as we know it has generally been developed as a vehicle suited to alignments on, or based on, city streets. Of course there were interurban lines that ran across country, particularly in North America, where they reached their apogee in 1915, before being decimated by the inexorable rise in motor vehicles. Some of these originated as steam railroads, and others entered cities on the tracks of urban tramways or rapid transit lines. In Europe, particularly Switzerland, such interurbans were called light railways (to distinguish them from their mainline cousins), and again running on to city streets was, and is, quite common. The former NZH in the Netherlands is another example.Japan, with its plethora of private railway companies, followed the US interurban pattern, though the boom there coincided with the decline in North America, and Michael Taplin gives a brief overview of the tram-train concept and asks if political and institutional issues form a greater barrier to its further implementation than technical concerns.

During 125 years of electric tramways, the tram as we know it has generally been developed as a vehicle suited to alignments on, or based on, city streets. Of course there were interurban lines that ran across country, particularly in North America, where they reached their apogee in 1915, before being decimated by the inexorable rise in motor vehicles. Some of these originated as steam railroads, and others entered cities on the tracks of urban tramways or rapid transit lines. In Europe, particularly Switzerland, such interurbans were called light railways (to distinguish them from their mainline cousins), and again running on to city streets was, and is, quite common. The former NZH in the Netherlands is another example.

Japan, with its plethora of private railway companies, followed the US interurban pattern, though the boom there coincided with the decline in North America, and Michael Taplin gives a brief overview of the tram-train concept and asks if political and institutional issues form a greater barrier to its further implementation than technical concerns.most lines survive today as rapid transit operations, with some penetration of city streets or subways. None of the above models were referred to as tram-trains, though the principle is not dissimilar.

Germany The modern tram-train concept, which saw its inauguration at Karlsruhe in Germany, uses a tram-based vehicle capable of operation on both mainline railway tracks and city tram tracks. Track-sharing between trams and trains was not unknown before, but the railways involved could hardly be deemed mainline.Karlsruhe had its own interurban operation, the Albtalbahn, which had track-sharing with Deutsche Bahn (DB) on its northern arm.

The possibility of travelling to the city centre without a change of vehicle was very attractive to passengers. Thanks to the German concept of the Verkehrsverbund joint tariff area, the financial consequences could be uncoupled from the commercial interests of the operators (AVG and DB), and work concentrated on the legal and technical hurdles to be overcome to permit through operation.On 25 September 1992 dual-voltage (750V dc and 15kV ac) light rail vehicles began running between Karlsruhe and Bretten, switching between city tram tracks and DB tracks at Grötzingen.

Within a year passenger numbers were up by 400%, and today the Karlsruhe model works over nearly 500km (310 miles) of track. There are 151 dual-voltage cars, 121 from Siemens, and 30 just being delivered by Bombardier (with options for up to 45 more). The tram-train model was truly a success, and good business for the Karlsruhe-based consultants involved.

Other German examples followed, in Saarbrücken, Chemnitz, Zwickau, Kassel and Nordhausen, though not exact copies. Saarbrücken runs 28 Bombardier Flexity Linkdual-voltage cars through the streets and then on DB tracks south to Sarreguemines,

For the rest of the story please click here

 

Postscript

If one wants to talk transit, join the Light Rail Transit Association

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