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Zürich signs order for 70 Flexity 2 trams

Zürich’s new Flexity 2 trams offer 20% more passenger capacity than the vehicles they will replace in 2019. (Imge credit: Bombardier)

Zürcher Verkehrsbetriebe (VBZ) signed a contract for 70 seven-section Bombardier Flexity 2 100% low-floor trams on 2 March in a deal valued at CHF300m (EUR281m). The first trams will be delivered at the end of 2019; an option exists for a further 70 vehicles.

The award was first announced in May 2016, but had been delayed due to legal challenges from Siemens and Stadler and a disagreement with Zürcher Verkehrsverbund (ZVV), the cantonal organisation that specifies the network and approves capital expenditure.

Following resolution of the issues with ZVV, the Administrative Court of the Canton of Zürich rejected the legal challenges from the rival manufacturers on 21 February.

Dr Guido Schoch, Director of VBZ, said, “All of the Flexity components have been intelligently integrated and reflect the latest technological developments to reduce overall operating costs. Likewise, our passengers will also benefit greatly from the exceptional safety and ergonomics that these modern trams offer.”

The order will see the retirement of the city’s Tram 2000 cars (first introduced into service in 1976), the oldest in the fleet. Zürich’s tramway consists of 15 lines and opened in 1882.