129 Million Belgium Tram Deal for Bombardier
Canadian rail equipment giant, Bombardier Transportation, has accepted an order for 48 new trams from Belgium operator De Lijn in a deal worth €129.
This deal represents the biggest single order of trams placed by De Lijn and the fleet of Flexity units are to run in Ghent and Antwerp in the north of Belgium where they are to replace PCC trams which have now become dated.
The trams are expected to be delivered towards the end of 2014 and will offer De Lijn’s customers comfort and space as well as reduced maintenance and operational costs. The new units are set to increase the number of passenger seats in Ghent and Antwerp by nearly 10,000 which De Lijn hope will make it more attractive to take the tram.
Bombardier Transportations Flexity 2 Trams
De Lijn’s general director, Roger Kesteloot said of the order “As an operator, we look forward to the arrival of 48 Flexity 2 trams toward the end of 2014. First and foremost, because it allows us to offer modern and spacious vehicles to our customers in Antwerp and Ghent, but also because they are more economical in terms of maintenance and operational costs. With these additional vehicles, we will increase the number of passenger seats by nearly 10,000, making it more attractive to take the tram. It goes without saying that this will efficiently improve the accessibility and the quality of life in both urban areas.”
Bombardier’s site in Bruges, Belgium will be overseeing all of the project management, commissioning, warranty and fleet support of the order with the manufacturing of the trams taking place at it’s sites in Bautzen, Germany, Vienna, Austria and also in Bruges.
Not all of the vehicles will be the same configuration and length; Ghent will receive 10 bi-directional seven-module vehicles with a length of approximately 43m, able to accommodate 378 passengers whilst Antwerp will receive 38 mono-directional trams of which 10 are seven-module vehicles with a length of approximately 43m and a capacity for 380 passengers and 28 are five-module vehicles with a length of approximately 31m, able to accommodate 266 passengers in total.
Bombardier Transportation Benelux’s chief country representative, Johan Van den Bussche said “We have had the privilege to be a strategic partner of the main operators in Belgium for the past decades and are committed to delivering innovative solutions that set new standards in comfort, efficiency and ecology.”