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Alstom unveils ‘tramway lumière’ for Paris as T4 on-street tests begin

The first Citadis X05 tram for Paris line T9 features a futuristic new design concept with additional illuminated panels on the exterior and new bench seating. Image couresy of Île-de-France Mobilities

The first of 22 seven-section double-ended Citadis X05 for line T9 (901-22) was unveiled at the Alstom works in La Rochelle Aytré at the end of June. The vehicle design, by Saguez & Partners, includes illuminated stripes at each end and along the roofline and inside to show the position of the eight double doors each side (orange when closed, green when open). The ‘tramway lumière’ was the choice of 75% of residents questioned about a new design. The new Île-de-France Mobilities livery is jade green with blue elements.

The 44m cars can carry up to 314 passengers and are equipped with full LED lighting and high-speed passenger Wi-Fi. Delivery of the 22 cars will start this summer at a cost of EUR70m, to be followed by up to 46 similar trams for line T10.

The 10km (6.2-mile) line T9 (Porte de Choisy – Orly Ville Gaston Viens via Marie de
Vitry-sur-Seine) is due to start carrying passengers at the end of 2020, while the 8.2km (five-mile) line T10 (Clamart Place du Garde – La Croix de Berny via Malabry) is due to open at the end of 2023. The operating contract for T9 has been awarded to Keolis for 5.5 years, the first time RATP will not operate one of the city’s new street-based tramways.

On the other side of the city, testing on the EUR270m, 6.5km (four-mile) Gargan – Hôpital de Montfermeil street-running branch of tram-train line T4 began on 15 July using two of the 15 Alstom Dualis 42m dual-voltage cars (401-15) earmarked for the line and purchased at a cost of EUR100m. The branch is electrified at 750V dc, while the 7.9km (4.9-mile) ‘main line’ from Bondy to Aulnay-sous-Bois (conversion of an SNCF railway in 2006) is electrified at 25kv ac.

Public service is due in December when a Bondy – Montfermeil service will be introduced, taking 30 minutes and running every six minutes at peaks. SNCF will remain the operator of T4, which in due course will offer interchange with the future Grand Paris Express lines 15 and 16.

The pace of development in Paris continues with the announcement of a tender for 37 new 33m trams for line T1 (with an option for 83 more). These will permit the replacement of the 35 Alstom TFS trams that were used to start the re-introduction of trams to the French capital in 1992, and provide for future extensions.