Patrick 79 Posted August 23, 2017 Share #1 Posted August 23, 2017 Vienna has the sixth largest streetcar network in the world and in this topic I'm going to introduce you to it. Let's start with a quick recap of the network's history: First opened in 1865, the network expanded rapidly until the second world war. Many routes were impassable in 1945, but with a great amount of work, most of the network was operational again after a relative short amount of time. Starting in the 60's, the goal for Vienna's politicians was to make the city car friendly. Two routes were put underground, making place for more car lanes overground. Many routes were converted to bus operation. Then, in 1969, it was decided to construct a subway network. Many more streetcar lines were "replaced" by the new subway lines. This obsession faded slowly away, and on next week's Saturday, hopefully for the last time, part of a streetcar line will be closed down because of an opening of a subway extension. Although all this sounds rather dark, Vienna's network is with 29 lines (28 as of 2 September, but not because of the subway extension mentioned earlier, but a restructuring of the network in the west) still a major part of Vienna's dense public transport network. Enough history, now let's look on the rolling stock currently in service. High-Floor Streetcars E1 Stock motor car 338 of these 6-axled articulated motor cars were built between 1967 and 1976, they were designated the numbers 4461 - 4560 and 4631 - 4868. Today only less than 70 are left in active service, many of the withdrawn cars found a new home in Kraków and Katowice (Poland), Miskolc (Hungary), Rotterdam (Netherlands), with the latter two having them already withdrawn from service and sold or scrapped. c3 Stock trailer car 190 of these 4-axled trailer cars were built between 1959 and 1963, they were designated the numbers 1101 - 1290. They are Vienna's oldest rolling stock in service and were for the last time in regular service on 30 July 2017 (on which this picture was also taken). One of the four left will however be in service for the last time in a special E1+c3 set on 1 and 2 September besides (other) heritage streecars for farewell of line 58 and the closure of part of line 67. c4 Stock trailer car 73 of these 4-axled trailer cars were built between 1974 and 1977, they were designated the numbers 1301 - 1373. They are the further development of the c3 stock and were redesigned to fit the looks of E1 stock and so that they could be operated conductorless from the start of their service. Almost all of them are still in service today. E2 Stock motor car 122 of these 6-axled articulated motor cars were built between 1977 and 1990, they are the successor to the E1 stock and were designated the numbers 4001 - 4098 and 4301 - 4324. They are the last generation of high floor streetcars and brought some severe changes with them: Instead of classical line-number-discs, they were originally equipped with line roller blinds. They were also equipped with a extendable 4th step at every door. The roller blinds were replaced by LED-displays and their switchgear was changed since 2007 respectively 2009. Only four were withdrawn from service because of severe damage due to accidents. They are likely to serve 10 more years. 117 of these 4-axled trailer cars were built between 1978 and 1990, they are the successor to the c5 stock and were designated the numbers 1401 - 1517. They are the trailer equivalent of the E2 stock motor cars, with a tiny difference: Just one was withdrawn from service until now. Low-Floor Streetcars A and B stock motor cars The 51 A stock cars (numbers 1 - 51) and 101 B stock cars (numbers 601 - 701) were built between 1997 (1995 if you count the prototypes) and 2005. As the first generation of the Siemens "ULF" (Ultra Low Floor), they have - as the name suggests - the lowest floor of any streetcar on the world. Altough that sounds great, this comes with two great downsides: Due to the narrow aisle in the independent supsension portals, it's impossible to not blockade anyone when standing in or next to them and the cars also tend to literally squeak in curves as they get older. They also have no aircon, that's why the local transit fans call them "Backbox"*. *) "Backbox" literally translated means "Bake box". This name originated from an ad one of the B stock cars was bearing for the "Backbox"-section of a grocery store (where you can get "fresh" pastry) and is used as an idiom which describes the summer "experience" in these cars perfectly. A1 and B1 stock motor cars The 80 A1 stock cars (numbers 52 - 131) and 100 B1 stock cars (numbers 702 - 801) were built between 2006 and 2015 (A1 stock) or 2009 and 2017 (B1 stock). They are the second and last generation of Siemens' "ULF" and have some improvements compared to their predecessors. They are all equipped with with aircon units and seem not to squeak in curves. This generation also has one great contra point, but that has less to do with the stocks themselve, as with the order of the 80 A1 stock. Because the A1 stock are shorter than the B1 stock, Vienna now has 131 short streetcars. The problem is: We don't need so many. Instead, some more B1 would have been a better option. The extension of A1 with two modules is too expensive. Flexity motor cars Rendering The Flexity motor cars will be Bombardier's Flexity Vienna. The identification letter isn't known yet. At least 119 are ordered, but up to 156 can be delivered. One or two "prototypes" (they're not really prototypes, but I don't know the English term for that) are currently under construction at Bombardier's plant in Vienna. All 119 will be delivered until 2026 according to the local transport company Wiener Linien. They will probably get the numbers 301 - 419 (456) designated. I hope this is of interest to you and that you enjoyed reading this introduction to Vienna's streetcar rolling stock. I'll post interesting news from here from time to time in this thread. For all bus and subway fans: I'm going to do something similar for the buses and subways too. If you have any questions (also about public transport in Vienna in general), just ask me - I am pleased to tell you everything you want to know! 7 Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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