The Vitoria-Gasteiz tramway to start the testing of the new Salburua section tomorrow
- Euskal Trenbide Sarea has completed the construction work of the new extension. Only the finishes to the civil works and adjustments to the facilities are pending
- Euskotren will be running the tests for just over two months and expect the new branch line to be in service by around Easter
On Tuesday 10 January, the Vitoria-Gasteiz Tramway will start the test period for the new section through the Salburua neighbourhood, with the aim of the branch line being in service by around Easter.
Euskal Trenbide Sarea, a publicly-owned company of the Basque Government’s Ministry for Territorial Planning, Housing & Transport, has completed the construction of the extension to Salburua. Only adjustments need to be made to the facilities and the urban development works completed of the zones adjacent to the new infrastructure. The landscaping work on the new green areas is also being carried out.
Eusko Trenbideak is ready to start the different tests that will end in just over two months with the coming into service of a new section of 2.5 kilometres and the addition of five new stops (Santa Luzia, Iliada, Nikosia, La Unión and Salburua) to the tram network of Vitoria-Gasteiz.
The arrival of the tramway to Salburua has involved a total investment of nearly €25 million, 65% funded by the Basque Government and the remaining 35% split equally between Vitoria-Gasteiz Local Council and Álava Provincial Council.
The gauge testing will be conducted on 10 January to check that the tram units will be able to circulate correctly along the new rails and facilities. Once the first test is completed, the following ones will be carried out until the new section comes into commercial service:
• Rail signalling: tests aimed at optimum and safe management of the traffic, of trams, pedestrians and the other users of the streets of Vitoria-Gasteiz
• Dynamic tests with the Series 500 and 600 units of the Vitoria-Gasteiz tramway service to check that those units run safely on the new section
• Tests of the information systems for users. Checking that the on-board system properly provides the information for the passengers about the tram service.
• Training period of the staff
• And, finally, the empty train trails to simulate the commercial service that will be operational days later. During this phase, the trams of the current commercial service will also run in both directions along the Florida-Salburua section, but without passengers. That will be the opportunity to check the journey times, the correct operating of all the systems, and the detection and correction of possible deviations.
Safety and coexistence in the new section
Tramway services are known for being reliable and safe, thanks to the system successfully coexisting with the general public, both as regards the citizens getting around on foot and when using other means of transport (cars, bikes, e-scooters, etc.). During the test period, Euskotren will disseminate – particularly among the residents of the new section built between
Florida and Salburua – recommendations for the coexistence of different means of transport, in order to reduce the risk of incidents and accidents on streets and roads along the new section.
Euskotren will introduce the district’s new ‘neighbour’ with a series of messages on the aspects to be taken into account with respect to a tramway service designed to meet much of the travel needs existing in the area. Specifically, the messages will stress that the trams have priority, the need to respect the road and traffic signs, and the importance of taking care in the areas along the tramway.