Chemnitz, Dresden and Leipzig form transport partnership
Posted on 22nd May 2023 at 16:09
The first of a new generation of Leipzig trams carried a special livery to mark 150 years of tramways in the city. (LVB)
Recognising the challenges from increased energy prices, complex vehicle procurement, a changing labour market and digitisation, the three municipal transport undertakings in the Saxon German cities of Chemnitz, Dresden and Leipzig have decided to collaborate under the name Saxon Business Alliance Mobility (SUMO). They aim to reduce costs and make the most economic use of financing from the state and federal governments and the local authorities by searching for future-proof innovative solutions for infrastructure management, joint procurement, innovative scheduling and rostering, cross-company employee training and customer-oriented digital sales.
An independent programme manager with a background of 25 years in public transport has been appointed to control the various activities. ‘Saving energy has never been as important as it is today, not only from an ecological point of view , but also from an economic point of view. International political crises in particular have caused enormous price increases for energy, raw materials and personell. The cost pressure that has arisen is forcing transport companies to completely re-asses identified potential for reducing costs. For instance in Dresden 975 megawatt hours/year can be saved by the reorganisation of tram parking in the depots each night and depots are being converted to LED lighting. We want to lower our costs and offer our customers better service’.
The programme covers buses as well as trams, with Dresden and Leipzig taking on board the challenges of electric buses, while Chemnitz is using hybrid buses with bio methane motors. Co-operation is required in driver training and education. The three cities' driving schools are already working together.
Chemnitz has a 34km tramway network with five lines and also runs over four former railway lines to reach neighbouring towns. There is a fleet of 55 trams. Dresden is larger with a 134.4km system served by 12 lines and 170 trams. Trams and buses in Dresden carry more than 143M passengers/year. Leipzig has a 146km tramway network with 16 lines and 271 trams carrying 81M passengers/year.
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