San Francisco cable car ‘big’ 19 on a test run. (Muni
On 9 December, the day before the official timetable change, the North German city of Hannover opened the latest extension of its Stadtbahn light rail system, when line 13 was created to serve the new branch from Wallensteinstrasse to Hemmingen. 
This was the day of the official inauguration by Regional Presidernt Steffan Krach and Oberbürgermester Belit Onay at 11.00, followed by free rides. Timetabled revenue service started with the timetable change the following day. 
The 3.3km surface line with six stops is mostly grassed tracks and sees a 10-minute headway with a 17-minute running time to Kropcke in the city centre, mostly in subway. 
Work started in 2019 and progress on the EUR 65M project was slowed by the pandemic. The total cost including street improvements reached EUR 91M, with 75% federal funding. An additional EUR 1.3M has been spent to create a 170-place P+R installation at the new terminus, which features seven charging stations for electric cars. 
Hemmingen used to be served by tram line 7, but that closed in 1955. 
In Baden-Wüttemberg in south-west Germany a similar timescale featured for the inauguration of the 1.8km tramway branch to Franklin, a redevelopment of the former Benjamin-Franklin-Village US Army barracks site for 10 000 residents. 
This branches off the existing network at Bensheimer Strasse and is largely street track with three new stops. Work here started in January 2022 and has proceeded to plan at a cost of EUR 28M (EUR 23.6M from federal and state grants). 
At first line 16 just runs to Bensheimer Strasse, where passengers must change to line 5, but it is expected that by 2027 the RNV tram fleet and driver recruitment will have stabilised so that a through service to the city centre and Rheinau can be provided. Tram service replaces bus 67 that ran Franklin–Käfertal. 
Hannover Stadtbahn train on the new line to Hemmingen. (UeStra) 
Tagged as: Hannover
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