No.489issue(2014 08 29)

First LRV for Addis Ababa on test

DYNAMIC testing of the first LRV for the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa is underway at the CNR Changchun plant in China.


The fleet of 41 three-section 70% low-floor vehicles will have a maximum speed of 70km/h. The first vehicles are scheduled for delivery at the end of this year, with the final units due to arrive in Ethiopia in January.


Addis Ababa is 2400m above sea level and the vehicles are therefore equipped for operation in high levels of ultraviolet light, with cabling, window films and rubber window surrounds designed to isolate 90% of UV rays.


CNR says it will start training drivers and maintenance staff on the vehicles next month.


China is financing 60% of the $US 400m light rail project, with the remainder coming from the Ethiopian government. The network will have three lines: Defence Forces Hospital - Ayat Village (17.3km), Meskel Square - Kality (16.2km) and Lideta - Menilik Square (3.9km).






Construction begins on Guadalajara Line 3

CIVIL works have begun on the first phase of the third light metro line in Mexico's second-largest city Guadalajara.


The initial section of Line 3 will link Periférico Zapopan in the northwest of the city with Federalisimo on Line 1.


The total length of all three phases will be 21.5km and the line will have 18 stations. The second phase will include a 5.5km tunnel with five underground stations, including an interchange with the east-west Line 2 at Plaza Universidad. The final section will extend the line on an elevated alignment into the southeastern suburbs to terminate at Central Camionera in Tlaquepaque.


When all three phases are completed Line 3 is expected to carry around 233,000 passengers per day with a journey time of 33 minutes between the two termini.


Services will be operated by a fleet of 16 two-car trains, each accommodating up to 500 passengers.







Saudi freight line upgrading deal signed

THE president of Saudi Railways Organisation (SRO), H E Mohamed Al-Suwaiket, has signed a Riyals 122.9m ($US 32.8m) contract with China Railway Construction Corporation for the renewal of a 78.4km stretch of the Damman – Harad – Riyadh freight line.


The 21-month contract will include upgrading of the line for 32.5-tonne axleloads.


Al-Suwaiket says SRO is currently preparing tender documents for the second phase of renewals, which will cover a 91km section of the line.


SRO recently awarded a contract for track doubling on the 214km Hofuf – Harad section of the route as part of a programme of enhancements to improve transit times and increase capacity on the line.






Go-ahead for new Chongqing – Changsha line

CONSTRUCTION is expected to begin in October on a 339km direct line linking Chongqing with Changsha, the capital of China's Hunan province, after China's Ministry of Environmental Protection approved plans for the Yuan 37.6bn ($US 6.1bn) project.


The line will be designed for 200km/h operation and will be used by freight trains as well as passenger services.


The project is due to be completed in 2020, reducing the journey time between the two cities to around four hours.





RZD Lastochka EMU demonstrated in Siberia

USSIAN Railways (RZD) has carried out a series of demonstration runs in western Siberia using its new-generation Lastochka (Swallow) EMU, the first appearance of the type east of the Urals.


The demonstration runs on Novosibirsk – Barnaul line coincided with the 100th anniversary of the railway, which was marked on August 18 with ceremonies in the two cities. More than 300 passengers received free tickets for the trip between the two cities and the five-car dual-voltage train completed the Novosibirsk – Barnaul journey in 3h 20min.


RZD says that as well as demonstrating the capabilities of the Lastochka, the opportunity was taken to carry out trial runs to assess the viability of operating similar trains on the route on a regular basis.


An initial batch of 38 Lastochkas was built at Siemens Krefeld plant in Germany and the EMUs are now being assembled by the Siemens/Sinara Ural Locomotives joint venture at its facility in Yekaterinburg. The trains are already in use on regional services from Moscow to Nizhny Novgorod, Smolensk, and Kursk, and St Petersburg to Bologoe and Petrozavodsk. The trains also operate in the Kazan and Sochi areas.






China issues tenders for 232 high-speed trains

CHINA Railway Group launched tenders through its procurement subsidiary China Rail Investment Corporation on August 22 for two contracts to supply a total of 232 high-speed trains.


The first tender covers the procurement of 57 250km/h EMUs, while the second is for 175 350km/h trains.


The deadline for bids is August 29 and CRIC says it expects to select a preferred bidder by September 16. Consortia are excluded from bidding, which effectively means the contracts can only be awarded to domestic suppliers.





Tokyo Monorail plans to extend


Tokyo Monorail Co has confirmed that it plans to extend the Tokyo Monorail line by 3 km from Hamamatsucho to Tokyo main line station. The project is expected to cost ¥109·5bn and be completed in 10 years.


The monorail line currently runs from Haneda International Airport to Hamamatsucho, where interchange is provided with JR East’s Yamanote Line. The extension would use a 3 km elevated alignment beside the JR Keihin-Tohoku Line to reach Tokyo station, where an elevated terminus would be constructed above the platforms of the Tokaido Line. No intermediate stations are envisaged.


Hamamatsucho station is to be rebuilt as part of a 12-year redevelopment project that also covers the World Trade Centre. Work to make the station fully accessible is due to be finished in time for the 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games, which Tokyo will host.


Meanwhile, Tokyo Monorail Co parent company JR East is considering building a conventional rail link to Haneda Airport, which would allow it to operate through services to Shinjuku and Tokyo stations.


Stadler rolls out first train for MTR Express

THE FIRST of six 200km/h Flirt EMUs for Swedish open-access operator MTR Express left the Stadler Rail plant in Bussnang, Switzerland, on August 21 bound initially for the company's train commissioning centre in nearby Erlen.


The first train is due to be delivered to Sweden in October and driver training is due to commence soon afterwards.


MTR Express - a subsidiary of Hong Kong's MTR Corporation - plans to launch its Stockholm – Gothenburg service in March 2015, when it will go head-to-head with incumbent operator SJ. MTR Express will operate 110 services per week with a journey time of 3h 10min on the 455km route.







Indian cabinet approves Nagpur metro

INDIA's Union Cabinet granted its approval on August 20 for the first phase of the metro network in Nagpur, the capital of Maharashtra state and India's 13th-largest city with a population of 2.2 million.


The initial phase comprises two lines totalling 38.2km. The north-south line will run for 19.6km from Automotive Square to the city's international cargo hub and airport, while the 18.6km east-west corridor will link Prajapati Nagar with Lokmanya Nagare.


The total cost of the project is expected to be Rs 86.8bn ($US 1.44bn), with the Indian government providing Rs 15.6bn in the form of equity and subordinate debt.


The project will be implemented by Nagpur Metro Rail Corporation, a 50:50 partnership between the state of Maharashtra and the Indian government.







Russian Talgo train arrives in Berlin

TALGO has delivered a variable-gauge set of 20 coaches for Russian Railways (RZD) to Berlin in readiness for testing on the German network.


Each coach was delivered by lorry from Talgo's Las Matas plant near Madrid to the company's Warschauer Strasse depot in Berlin, where the train was marshalled.


RZD has ordered seven Talgo sets. Three of these trains will be equipped with variable-gauge 1435mm and 1520mm-gauge wheelsets for use on services from Russia to Europe, while the remaining four trains will be fitted with fixed 1520mm-gauge wheelsets.


The variable-gauge trains will be introduced on overnight services between Moscow and Berlin next year.


The 1520mm-gauge sets were due to enter service in October between Moscow and Kiev, but this has been cancelled due to political tensions between Russia and Ukraine.


RZD announced earlier this year these trains will instead replace Siemens Sapsan high-speed trains on the Moscow – Nizhny Novgorod route from 2015. The first of the 1520mm-gauge trains was delivered direct to Russia earlier this year and is now undergoing trials.






Kirow cranes shipped to China

Six Kirow Multi Tasker KRC 2880 construction and accident recovery cranes are being delivered from Germany to China, and a further 20 KRC 1680 cranes are to follow next year.


Kuehne & Nagel is responsible for freight forwarding and booking of the initial six cranes, which were transported from the factory in Leipzig to the Port of Hamburg by barge and road.


They are being shipped from Hamburg to the Port of Tianjin on the Rickmers-Linie heavy-lift vessel Rickmers Singapore, which is scheduled to arrive in China late October as part of its eastbound round-the-world circuit from Europe to Asia, North America and back to Europe.









Chengdu metro train unveiled

CNR Changchun unveiled the first trainset for Chengdu metro Line 4 on August 21.


CNR Changchun is supplying 27 six-car trainsets for metro Line 4, as well as 24 for Line 3, at a cost of 1·36bn yuan. Deliveries of the Line 4 cars are due to run until June 2015, and the vehicles are to enter service on the 16-station route later that year.


The stainless steel bodied trainsets have Optonix traction equipment supplied by Alstom and its local joint venture Shanghai Alstom Transport Electrical Equipment Co Ltd. The vehicles have a maximum speed of 80 km/h and capacity for 1 460 passengers. Real-time fault diagnostics can be transmitted to the depot via wi-fi.




Acting MTR CEO to renew focus on Hong Kong

MTR Corporation's acting CEO Mr Lincoln Leong, who started his new role on August 18, has pledged to sharpen the company's focus on serving Hong Kong by introducing extra services and to deliver its new projects in a "safe and timely manner."


Leong replaces Mr Jay Walder, the former New York MTA CEO, who stepped down on August 15 after three years in Hong Kong following criticism of a two-year delay to the Express Rail Link project, which will connect Kowloon in the heart of Hong Kong with Guangzhou in main land China.


Specifically Leong says MTR will operate 600 extra services to its six busiest lines starting from August 29. These services will also support a trial of the new Early Bird Discount Promotion which offers Octopus smartcard users a 25% discount if they exit any of the 29 core urban MTR stations from 07.15 to 08.15 on Monday to Friday. The trial will run from September 1 to May 31 2015.


"We hope that the new train services and the trial of the Early Bird Discount Promotion will help to ease some of the crowding during the busy morning peak period," Leong says.


Delays to the high-speed project, construction of which commenced in 2010, became apparent by March 2013 which raised the prospect a partial opening of five of the 15 platforms at the line's terminal station by the 2015 expected opening date.


However, in February contractors told MTR that even a partial opening would not be possible until June 2016 and the idea was scrapped altogether following a severe rainstorm in March which damaged a tunnel boring machine. The line is now scheduled to open in 2017, meaning that all of MTR's five current major construction projects in Hong Kong are now delayed.


An internal report issued in July criticised Walder for not exercising "more critical judgment" in respect to monitoring the project's progress and for failing to report the partial opening plans, which were raised by project director Mr Chew Tai-chong, who received most of the blame for failing to report delays to the project. Chew has since announced he will step down in October, a year before his contract was due to expire.


MTR responded to suggestions that the report prompted Walder's departure by stating that it was a mutual agreement and would be "beneficial to the company".


Walder announced in May that he would not stay beyond the length of his contract which was due to expire in May 2015. A global search is now underway to identify his permanent replacement.






Technical support:| Contribute| Custom
Address: 1-1210 Chengnandadao Plaza, Gongyixi Bridge, Fengtai District, Beijing China Postalcode:10006
Tel:86-10-51662621/22 Fax:86-10-88583069     【京ICP备13032135号】  【京公网安备11010602004570号】