"These new trains will enable us to increase capacity on the network by up to 30 per cent, significantly improving the comfort, reliability and quality of our service for customers."
Transport for London (TfL) has got the wheels in motion for the introduction of a new fleet of trains on the capital’s Docklands Light Railway (DLR), after it initiated an Invitation to Negotiate to a select group of rolling stock manufacturers.
Alstom Transport UK, Bombardier Transportation, CAF and a consortium comprising Siemens, Stadler Bussang and Stadler Rail Valencia have all been selected for the deal which will include 43 of the latest walk-through trains that will increase capacity on the line by 30%.
The full contract to build the trains will be awarded in Autumn 2018, with the finished trains entering service four years later. The new fleet, replacing the DLR's 30-year-old trains, will feature on-board real-time information, air-conditioning and mobile device charging points – a first for TfL.
Jonathan Fox, TfL's director of rail and sponsored services, said the trains were an important step in the procurement process that would safeguard the DLR, which carries around 122 million customers a year, against future passenger growth.
“These new trains will enable us to increase capacity on the network by up to 30 per cent, significantly improving the comfort, reliability and quality of our service for customers. They will also support the creation of further jobs and homes in the Docklands area,” said Fox.
TfL’s latest announcement is part of its multi-billion pound plan to create better public transport robust enough to handle the capital’s growing population, which according to the London Assembly could potentially rise by more than one million people to 10 million people by 2029.
The DLR, which connects the City of London with financial and residential districts in the East, will receive a boost to its connectivity from next year when some of its interchange stations, including Canary Wharf, West India Quay, Stratford and Custom House, will link it with the Elizabeth Line.
Other TfL projects that have also been received new trains include London Underground’s Circle and District lines, both of which received open-plan walkthrough trains very similar in design to those that will enter service on the DLR. 25o new trains are also planned for the Bakerloo, Central, Waterloo & City lines and Piccadilly, with the latter arriving in 2023.
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