The February Tramways & Urban Transit has an excellent article on TramTrains and their growing popularity with transit planners in Europe and North America. The article ” Tram-trains: are they worth it? “, is interesting and well worth reading as very important questions are posed. The article was written mainly for the UK market where TramTrain is seen by transit bureaucrats as a “cheap way to replace clapped out DMU’s” on local services and more thought must be put into UK TramTrain proposals.
The lessons for the UK are also lessons for us on the ‘other side of the pond’.
Most interesting and what North American TramTrain proponents have know all along, is that today’s TramTrain can trace its ancestry back to the North American interurban!
The lesson for Rail For The Valley is, for the proposed reinstatement of valley interurban operation to be successful, interurban or TramTrain must service urban areas like Vancouver and must must do away with inconvenient and time consuming transfers, like the transfer proposed by many ‘rail’ groups for the interurban service to terminated at Scott Road Station and passenger transfer to SkyTrain.
Eliminating the transfer to SkyTrain and providing a direct service to downtown Vancouver are key in making the Valley interurban or TramTrain a success.
Tags: Abbotsford, C-train, Chilliwack, demonstration project, economic stimulus, Fraser River rail bridge, Fraser Valley, interurban, Karlsruhe, Langley, light rail, LRT, LRTA, Rail for the Valley, streetcars, study, Surrey, track-sharing, tram, trams, tramtrain, transit, Translink, VALTAC, Vancouver