Swiss transport operator Aargau Verkehr AG, which was recently established in June 2018 as a result of the merger of BDWM Transport and Wynental- und Suhrentalbahn (WSB), has announced it has selected Stadler Tramlink rolling stock for the narrow-gauge light rail line in the Limmat Valley (canton of Aargau), which is expected to open in December 2022.
The decision to go with Stadler was made after a joint public tender with BLT (Baselland Transport AG), which is seeking to purchase ten vehicles of the same type to operate on a separate line. The exact specifications of this modern, comfortable low-floor vehicle have not yet been set. The total order will comprise eight units. Aargau Verkehr says it has scheduled the definitive order for autumn 2019. Between now and then it will create the exact specifications with its partners (the federal government and the cantons of Aargau and Zurich).
The collaboration with BLT means that cost efficiencies will exist both in terms of acquisition and later, when it comes to maintenance.
The vehicles, which will be manufactured in Valencia, Spain, are modular and therefore flexible in their configuration options. They can be integrated perfectly into various different route networks. For example, vehicles of the same type will be used in Lugano from 2020. The bi-directional articulated vehicles are highly reliable and exhibit outstanding operating qualities. They are also efficient to maintain.
The 7-car vehicles are to be 44.3m long and 2.4m wide. They also need to meet legal requirements for disabled access. The vehicles will be low-floor throughout. They will also be spacious around the doorways to allow for a fast exchange of passengers. Because these vehicles have a maximum weight of just 55.2 tonnes, they are very energy efficient. There will be 88 seats as well as 16 fold-down seats and 172 standing spaces, i.e. a total capacity of 260. Aargau Verkehr says it will optimise the vehicles for standing spaces because of the expected high level of demand for the service. The Stadler Tramlink trains will feature fully integrated passenger information systems, will be fully air-conditioned and will be able to travel at a top speed of 80km/h.
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