The International Light Rail Magazine
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Sharing experience in Zaragoza

Sharing experience in Zaragoza

With travel restrictions easing, the demand for in-person networking and sharing of experience is rising. Against this backdrop, figures from across the light rail sector gathered in Aragon’s capital, Zaragoza, for the 2021 European Light Rail Congress – for many their first physical gathering in 18 months. Held over two days on 15-16 September, the event saw a focus on safety, innovation and sustainability, perhaps unsurprising as the world has changed immeasurably since the last event in Brussels in 2019. Mirrored across the globe, LRT systems have played a crucial role in keeping cities moving over the past 18 months. Nowhere is this more evident than in Zaragoza, where the tramway has once again proved its value as the backbone of the mobility network. Organised by TAUT publisher Mainspring and supported by Mobility City, Fundacion Ibercaja and Tranvía de Zaragoza, over 100 participants heard first-hand case studies of some of the most exciting developments over the Congress’ two days, also taking part in a technical visit and an interactive networking evening where delegates could explore some of the latest technologies first-hand. A fine welcome The Congress began with a warm welcome from the Mayor of Zaragoza, Jorge Azcón, who outlined the success of his city’s tram network in driving modal shift away from car ownership. The city has an ambitious vision of sustainability and to drive its own carbon emissions down by 40% within the next decade. The tramway will play a key part in this plan. Although the effects of COVID-19 have been particularly felt in northern Spain, patronage is recovering well, he said. Natalia Chueca, the City...
Celebrating success…. virtually

Celebrating success…. virtually

Guests from 11 countries gathered to celebrate another year of outstanding achievement at the 2020 Global Light Rail Awards – held virtually on 11 November. Now in its 14th year, the industry’s ‘Oscars’ saw entries from Europe, North America, Africa and Asia compete across 16 categories. Against a backdrop of unprecedented challenges, the expert judging panel noted “this was one of the toughest years yet to choose the winners. It is fantastic to see so many joint entries, showing that industry partners are sharing best practice and expertise as we look to bring down costs, improve safety and sustainability and deliver the best possible passenger experience.” UK Light Rail Minister Baroness Vere delivered the event’s welcome address, saying: “During COVID-19, light rail services have been vital to our response to the pandemic. The incredible work of the entire industry and the countless stories of individuals delivering over and above in unprecedented circumstances, mean light rail will continue to play a vital role in the economy going forward. “I want to pay tribute to all the winners, who delivered exceptional service in what has been a year in which light rail has shown the teamwork, creativity and innovation to maintain services during this difficult time. “In England, we have provided grant funding of over GBP160m, reflecting just how important these services are for local economies and communities.” Our review of the 2020 Global Light Rail Awards starts on page 15 of January’s...

COVID forces InnoTrans cancellation

The 2020 running of the world’s largest rail exhibition – held in Berlin biennially since 1996 – has been cancelled. The international trade fair, that attracted over 150 000 visitors from 149 countries in 2018, was due to be held in September 2020, but had been postponed to April 2021 in light of the coronavirus pandemic. Organiser Messe Berlin confirmed on 24 October that the next event will now take place on 20-23 September 2022. The Berlin Senate has a current ban on gatherings of more than 5000 people and the exhibitors and trade visitors need more certainty than can be provided by the April 2021 date, Berlin Messe said in a statement. Organisers of international events have had to make difficult decisions on dates. The UITP Global Public Transport Summit, planned to be held in the Australian city of Melbourne in June 2021, has been postponed to 14-17 December 2021. The UK Light Rail Conference has also been postponed from its 2020 dates to May 2021.   InnoTrans: www.innotrans.com   UITP: uitpsummit.org/   UKLRC:...
Rail Live!

Rail Live!

Rail Live! is now firmly positioned as one of the world’s most exciting rail events. This event brings top tier leaders of the rail industry together to discuss topics critical to future developments in the premium conference, alongside an action-packed exhibition which attracts the full rail supply chain. The conference itself brings global rail leaders together to discuss the transformation of the rail industry. The show is focused on digital innovation, operational efficiency and the global development of rail worldwide where as the free to attend exhibition showcases the latest rail technology, hosting over 300 exhibitors representing the full supply chain. Attend to discover the latest digital solutions for railway operators, infrastructure managers, railway projects and their partners around the world.” For more information click...
European Light Rail Congress 2021 – Zaragoza

European Light Rail Congress 2021 – Zaragoza

16-17 June 2021 – Ibercaja Patio de la Infanta – Zaragoza, Spain The European Light Rail Congress brings together leading opinion-formers and decision-makers from across Europe for two days of debate around the role of technology in the development of sustainable urban travel. With presentations and exhibitions from some of the industry’s most innovative suppliers and service providers, this congress also includes technical visits and over eight hours of networking sessions. For 2021, we are delighted to be holding the event in the beautiful city of Zaragoza in conjunction with our partners: Tranvía Zaragoza, Mobility City and the Fundación Ibercaja. Our local partners at Tranvia Zaragoza have arranged for a depot visit with a behind-the-scenes tour as part of day one’s activities at The European Light Rail Congress. You will be able to get to the depot using the tramway, which is very close to the venue.  For more information telephone Geoff Butler: +44 (0) 1733 367610, or email...
Your night to shine?

Your night to shine?

Recognising excellence and innovation in the global light and urban rail sector The Global Light Rail Awards is the perfect occasion to join the industry in celebrating excellence and innovation over the past 12 months. Now well-known as the #1 social event on the calendar for light rail, the Global Light Rail Awards recognises the successes of our incredible industry – and the dedicated and passionate people who deliver outstanding projects, create innovative and ground-breaking products, and deliver exceptional customer service to millions of passengers each day. A Champagne Reception in the magnificent surroundings of the Honourable Artillery Company in central London will kick off this most glitzy of nights; from there guests will enjoy sumptuous four-course fine dining and drinks before the main event itself – hosted for another year by our impeccable host, broadcaster and journalist Nicholas Owen. This is the one night of the year where the industry lets its hair down and unashamedly shouts from the rooftops about everything that makes light rail such a special industry to be a part of. For more details please see www.mainspring.co.uk, or telephone on 01733...