Cleveland to place order with Siemens
Posted on 9th April 2023 at 15:46
In early April, Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority agreed to place a USD 164M contract with Siemens Mobility for the delivery of 24 high-floor S200 LRVs, with the hope that delivery will start in 2026 and be completed by spring 2027.The new cars will be 25.7m (84.5 feet) long and 2.65m (8.5 feet) wide and be able to work on both the 31km (19.4-mile) Windermere–Hopkins International Airport line (a metro) and the two 29km (18.1-mile) Shaker Heights–Tower City LRT lines, giving the possibility of through service from Shaker Heights to the airport once a large enough fleet is available (the two operations share the same track at three stations with dual height platforms).
There is an option for a further 36 cars for delivery from 2030, subject to the necessary funding (USD 393M) being secured; RTA hopes to get USD 230M from a federal grant. RTA also hopes to re-open the 3.5km (2.2-mile) 1996-built Waterfront LRT line that has been closed since the start of the pandemic. This is the second attempt to award a contract; the first tendering exercise produced no bids. Siemens was only bidder this time.
‘These rail cars provide us with opportunities for new service alignments that will completely enhance our customers’ riding experience,’ said GCRTA Chief Operating Officer Dr. Floun’say Caver. ‘Imagine the ability to take a train directly from the Green Road Station to Cleveland Hopkins International Airport Station without having to switch trains at Tower City.’
Shaker Heights Rapid Transit was built from 1920 to 1937 to serve a newly-developed suburban community and the PCC cars that provided service were replaced by 48 2.8m-wide Breda LRVs in 1980-81, but these days only 34 are needed for peak service on the two lines (Green and Blue). The Windermere–Airport metro (Red line) was built in 1955-75 and is worked by 60 3.15m-wide Tokyu Car Company cars built in 1984/5; 40 remain in service.
A concept illustration of the Siemens car for Cleveland RTA (Siemens Mobility)
Advice from LTK Engineering consultants was that a standard car for both operations would bring economies, even though it would mean the platforms at the 18 Red Line stations having to be closed for some weeks to permit 114mm (4.5”) to be added to platform widths.
Siemens has built LRVs at a factory in Sacramento, California since the mid-1980s; the plant has been expanded several times. On 7 March the company announced that it will invest USD 220M to build a passenger rail car manufacturing plant at Lexington, Davidson County, North Carolina with work starting in 2024, and over 500 jobs created. This will primarily serve its east Coast customers.
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