INTRODUCTION OF LOW-FLOOR LIGHT RAIL VEHICLES TO NORTH AMERICA: HISTORY AND STATUS OF THE PORTLAND TYPE 2 VEHICLE

Modern low-floor light rail vehicles (LFLRVs) first entered revenue service in Europe during the mid-1980s, and since then, numerous transit agencies in Europe have ordered or are operating LFLRVs in various configurations. In 1991 Tri-County Metropolitan Transportation District of Oregon (Tri-Met), the transit operator in Portland, conducted an extensive study of accessibility to its existing and planned light rail lines and after much deliberation decided in 1992 to pursue the first LFLRV procurement in North America. Of particular concern to Tri-Met was whether LFLRVs could meet requirements for higher carbody strength and higher operating speeds than were common in European designs. After a competitive process, a contract was awarded to Siemens Duewag Corporation in June 1993 at a price of $86.6 million for 37 LFLRVs and associated equipment. Major features of the LFLRVs are full compatibility with Tri-Met's existing high-floor light rail vehicles; a 70% low-floor section at a height of 14 in. (35.6 cm); four doors per side, all in the low-floor section, with a bridgeplate in the center doors; an unpowered center truck with independently braked full-sized wheels on stub axles and with an articulation on each end of the truck; standard motor trucks; and a roof-mounted, microprocessor-controlled, AC propulsion system. Design of the LFLRV was substantially complete by the end of 1994, and proof-of-design tests for all major systems were completed or under way in mid-1995. Carbody strength tests were successfully conducted in March 1995. Assembly of the first vehicle began in May 1995, and it is estimated that the first vehicle will be delivered to Portland in December 1995.

Language

  • English

Media Info

  • Media Type: Digital/other
  • Features: Figures; Photos;
  • Pagination: p. 175-183
  • Monograph Title: SEVENTH NATIONAL CONFERENCE ON LIGHT RAIL TRANSIT, BALTIMORE, MARYLAND, NOVEMBER 12-15, 1995. VOLUME 1
  • Serial:

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00716776
  • Record Type: Publication
  • ISBN: 0309061520
  • Files: TRIS, TRB
  • Created Date: Jan 30 1996 12:00AM