Information portal about all European guided public transportation systems. This site is regularly updated.
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Light Rail Transport (LRT)   [ 259 cities presented here ] (most recent entries: Mar, 2nd, 2017)

LRT definition includes a wide range of applications, from classic tram to fast tram (metrotram). It appears correct to intend as properly said LRT systems those mass rapid transit systems which couldn't be classified as typical metro, not having a fully segregated track. They often present a combination of mixed traffic, reserved and segregated sections (e.g. short underground or viaduct segments); LRT systems are operated with tram o tram-like rolling stock.
The typical modern tram is a guided transport system which runs ground level (on reserved lanes or in mixed road traffic); in comparison with the traditional tramways, the modern ones assure higher commercial speed and higher capacity, thanks to an increased protection of its lanes (which can be partly reserved or segregated) in order to reduce its interferences with private cars and pedestrians. Each one of the major tram system producers tried to razionalize their market production by the development of the so-called "tram standard", a modular kind of vehicle easy to be adapted to the specific requirements of each purchaser. One of the distinguishing elements between the different models is the internal floor height referred to the rails level. Some of the modern trams (partial low floor) are more similar to the traditional ones, with the bogies able to rotate regards the car-body; in the traditional tramways, the floor height was up to 900 mm, in the modern partial low floor trams it's about 600 mm over the bogies, while it's only 350 mm in the rest of the vehicle (boarding zone included). A more innovative concept characterizes the full low floor trams, whose floor is about 350 mm height in every part of the car, due to the adoption of particolar bogies fixed to the carbody; the insertion of the vehicle in the curves is obtained thanks to suspended intermediate cars located between every two cars on bogies. Partial low floor trams generally maximize the cinematic performance and the cars durability, while full low floor trams assure a whole easy approachability in every part of the vehicle. Almost every modern tram model offers the double option of the mono and bi-directional type; the latter are more flexible (central and side platforms stops are both possible) but they must renounce at some seats in both side of the doors.

The so-called "tram on tyres" are a particular kind of LRTs/trams; they are also (and more correctly) called "intermediate systems" mixing trolleybus and tram features. The concept of tram on tyres is very recent and derives from the research of a flexible and reversible vehicle, which works mostly in guided mode (in order to maximize the system capacity, the performances and the minimization of the dynamic envelope) but able to switch in trolleybus mode, or, in some cases, running in the road traffic with autonomous power supply (batteries, diesel engine, etc.) like a normal bus. This feature could be very important in the ancient city centers of many towns, characterized by narrow roads and by pre-existing elements (e.g. buildings, monuments, etc.) which cause difficulties in the insertion of heavy infrastructures (such as the ordinary tram rails). Tram on tyres can be classified in order to their guidance system (mechanical guidance by a central monorail,optical guidance,magnetical guidance); at the present date, only the mechanical guidance systems seems to have a real diffusion, while the virtual guidance ones (optical or magnetical) encountered remarkable problems since their first applications.

The so-called "tram-trains" are another particular kind of LRTs/trams; their concept derives from the intention to integrate suburban railways (pre-existing lines which connect the urban centers with the districts areas) and tram lines (running inside the urban perimeter). This requires some fundamental common features between tram and local railway network, first of all the adoption of the same rail gauge. If the tram and the railway network have a different voltage, it's necessary the adoption of dual voltage vehicles, able to run both in tram mode (normally with 600/750 V DC overhead power supply) and in train mode (e.g. 15/25 KV AC if the line is electrified or with diesel autonomous power supply if the railway isn't electrified). Karlsruhe Stadbahn (Germany) is an emblematic case of properly said tram-train, with trams equipped with on-board inverters in order to switch from tram mode (750 V DC) to train mode (15 kV AC) and viceversa; this dual voltage cars share part of their route with suburban and regional ordinary trains. Kassel system (Germany) shows another interesting feature: the adopted rolling stock is able to run along the unelectrified railway sections switching from tram electric voltage (750 V DC) to an autonomous diesel power supply. In some other cases, the tram network simply reuses or incorporates some dismantled or under utilized railway tracks (e.g. Manchester Metrolink), without any real tram-train track sharing operations.
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News 2014
  • Dec 14
  • - Warsaw: tram Line 2 extension Stare Swidry-Tarchomin Koscielny opened on 24-12-2014
  • - Paris: tram T8 Porte de Paris-Epinay Orgemont/Villetaneuse Universite opened on 16-12-2014
  • - Hannover: tram Line 7 Line 7 Schierholzstrasse-Misburg opened on 14-12-2014
  • - Basel: tram Line 8 extension Kleinhuningen-Weil am Rhein Bahnhof/Zentrum opened on 14-12-2014
  • - Frankfurt: tram Line 17 extension Stresemannallee/Gartenstrasse-Morfelder Landstrasse opened on 14-12-2014
  • - Berlin: metro M5 extension Naturkundemuseum-Hauptbahnhof-Luneburger Str. opened on 14-12-2014
  • - Paris: tram T6 Chatillon Montrouge-Robert Wagner opened on 13-12-2014
  • - Moscow: metro M1 Yugo Zapadnaya-Troparyovo extension opened on 08-12-2014
  • Nov 14
  • - Rome: driverless metro Line C Parco di Centocelle-Monte Compatri/Pantano opened on 09-11-2014
  • - Istanbul: metro M1 extension Aksaray - Yenikapi opened on 09-11-2014
  • - Manchester: Metrolink extension St Werburgh's Road-Manchester Airport opened on 03-11-2014
  • Oct 14
  • - Oslo: premetro Line 2 section Avlos-Kolsas opened on 12-10-2014
  • - Saarbrucken: Saarbahn line S1 section Heusweiler Markt-Lebach-Jabach opened on 05-10-2014
  • Sept 14
  • - Venice: tram T1 Sernaglia-Panorama opened on 12-09-2014
  • - Aubagne: tram T1 Gare-Le Charrel opened on 01-09-2014
  • - Aubagne: tram T1 Gare-Le Charrel opened on 01-09-2014
  • Aug 14
  • - Le Mans: tram T2 Prefecture-Bellevue Hauts de Coulaines opened on 30-08-2014
  • - Besancon: tram line Hauts du Chazal-Gare Viotte/Chalezeule opened on 30-08-2014
  • - Moscow: metro M7 Spartak stop added on 27-08-2014
  • - Stockholm: LRT line L22 (Tvarbanan) Solna centrum-Solna station opened on 18-08-2014
  • - Bremen: tram Line 4 extension Borgfeld-Falkenberg opened on 01-08-2014
  • Jul 14
  • - Malaga: metro lines L1 (Andalucía Tech-El Perchel) and L2 (Palacio de los Deportes-El Perchel) opened on 30-07-2014
  • - Izmir: metro extension Goztepe-Fahrettin Altay opened on 27-07-2014
  • Jun 14
  • - Grenoble: tram Line E Louise Michel-Saint Martin le Vinoux opened on 28-06-2014
  • - Bursa: Bursaray extension Gursu-Kestel opened on 05-06-2014
  • - Minsk: metro Line 1 extension Petrovshchina-Malinovka opened on 03-06-2014
  • May 14
  • - Edinburgh: tram line Edinburgh Airport-York Place opened on 31-05-2014
  • Mar 14
  • - Manchester: Metrolink extension Rochdale Railway Station-Rochdale Town Centre opened on 31-03-2014
  • - Budapest: metro M4 Kelenfold vasutallomss-Keleti palyaudvar opened on 28-03-2014
  • - Bursa: Bursaray extension Otosansit-Gursu opened on 27-03-2014
  • - Izmir: metro extension Hatay-Goztepe opened on 25-03-2014
  • - Bursa: Bursaray extension Arabayatagi-Otosansit opened on 19-03-2014
  • - Ankara: driverless metro M2 Kizilay-Koru opened on 13-03-2014
  • - Milan: driverless metro M5 extension Zara-Garibaldi opened on 01-03-2014
  • - Debrecen: tram Line 2 Kalvin ter-Doberdo utca opened on 01-03-2014
  • Feb 13
  • - Moscow: metro Line 12 extension Ul. Starokachalovskaya-Bitsevskiy Park opened on 27-02-2014
  • - Valenciennes: tram line T2 Pont Jacob-Vieux Condè Le Boulon opened on 24-02-2014
  • - Lyon: tram T1 extension Hôtel de Region-Montrochet-Debourg opened on 19-02-2014
  • - Istanbul: metro M2 extension Sishane-Yenikapi opened on 15-02-2014
  • - Ankara: driverless metro M3 Batikent-OSB Torekent opened on 12-02-2014
  • Jan 14
  • - Moscow: metro Line 8 Delovoy Tsentr-Park Pobedy opened on 31-01-2014
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