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A new take on the Tramway

A more compact, low-equipment tramway

French cities are looking for attractive public transport systems that prioritise sustainable mobility: high frequency during peak hours, a strong image, and quality urban planning. Conventional tram solutions have provided an appropriate response for many communities, but today their expectations are increasingly specific.

Tramway© Intrépide production

In light of these new requirements, and as part of its TRAMWAY AUTREMENT (alternative tramway design) initiative, Egis has developed tailored solutions. These solutions are innovative in that they enhance the variety of possible tram projects, and consequently the contexts in which this mode of transport may be of use. However, these solutions are always based on proven technologies, allowing control of costs and deadlines. The various design options for a tram line can be adapted and combined to provide a wide range of solutions. The expertise of Egis’s teams has led to the development of four contrasting tram families, suited to the configurations typically encountered in France, with investment amounts ranging from 5 to 25 million euros before tax per kilometre of line:

  • Solution 1 : The classic tramway: A tramway that involves high quality public development and a resolutely modern image for the city, associated with the construction of distinctive buildings and stations, and elaborate systems and equipment. The line includes a high density of stops with fairly high capacity vehicles, and excellent frequency to enhance its attractiveness.
  • Solution 2 : The short tramway: A tramway that involves high quality public spaces and a resolutely modern image for the city, but with less elaborate systems and equipment. The line includes a high density of stops with vehicles the size of an articulated bus, and excellent frequency to enhance its attractiveness.
  • Solution 3 : The economical tramway: A tram line built with minimal renewal of public spaces, limited to the roads bordering the platform. This tram has a low level of systems and equipment. It is based on high capacity vehicles and service frequencies limited to 7 or 8 minutes during peak hours. This concept requires some standardisation of rolling stock and stations, and offers a limited range of options.
  • Solution 4 : The express tramway: A tram line built with minimal impact on public spaces, using tracks laid on ballast, passing through non-urbanised areas, or with street renewals limited to the roads bordering the platform. The tram can be designed with simplified systems and equipment, and provides a service frequency of between 15 and 20 minutes at peak times. In order to ensure very high commercial speeds (40 to 60 kmph) the stations should be spaced 2 to 5 kilometres apart.

The community of Besançon entrusted Egis with the challenge of designing and building its tramway using its TRAMWAY AUTREMENT (Alternative tramway design) approach. This approach has helped launch many innovations that are already benefiting other networks. It also includes many optimisations in terms of the size of the rolling stock – reduced to 24m – and simplification of equipment and systems. Other innovations in the fields of tracks, signalling, the design of turning areas (terminus), stations, and in the organisation of the operation itself, demonstrate the quality of this tramway at a particularly reasonable cost.
Inhabitants’ appropriation of redeveloped areas as part of this project is a source of great satisfaction for Egis, project manager for the development of this tramway.

See the COP 21 climate solution website See the  Egis Focus SD Egis sur «Line 5 of the Montpellier tramway
Enhancing regional connections to improve comfort for Montpellier residents and to maintain the region’s attractiveness »
See the  Egis Focus SD Egis on  «Sustainable development in the context of an urban transport project in Wroclaw»