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First Pesa Twist II low-floor tram and infrastructure renewal in Częstochowa

The first of a total of 10 Pesa Twist II low-floor trams arrived in Częstochowa end of March 2020 I © MPK Częstochowa

Częstochowa, located in the southern-polish region Silesia, is currently receiving a new fleet of 10 low-floor trams from rolling stock manufacturer Pesa. Tram operator MPK ordered the fleet in January 2018 with an expected delivery in 2019 which was delayed. The first so-called Twist II arrived in Częstochowa in mid-march. At the same time, major parts of the tram network are currently being renewed. The tram system dates from 1959 and is therefore Poland’s second-youngest tram after Olsztyn.

The delivery contract has a total volume of PLN 90 million (ca. 19.9 million EUR) or 1.99 million EUR per tram. The new trams are derived from Częstochowa’s first Twist series 2010N of which seven vehicles have been delivered in 2012. The tram consists in three car segments with a total of four turnable bogies. The exterior, front and rear design have been updated. In the interior, improved passenger information screens, ticket machines and internet access have been implemented. Despite the Corona pandemic, MPK expects to put the tram into passenger operation around May with the remaining 9 trams to be delivered during summer 2020.

The trams have a length of 32.2 m and is therefore 20 centimeters wider than its predecessor. Its width is of 2.4 m and allows for a capacity of 221 passengers (with a norm of 5 people per m²) of which 58 can be seated. The trams are uni-directional vehicles with 7 doors and an entrance height of 350 mm. The Twist II are fitted with with classic axial wheelset bogies and are motorized with 4 x 105 kW asynchronous motors with a Bo ‘2’ 2 ‘Bo’ axle arrangement. Furthermore, the trams are fitted with an on-board energy storage system for the event of a power outage or when it is necessary to enter a track without catenary. So far, Pesa has delivered similar vehicles to Katowice (Tramwaje Śląskie), MPK Kraków and MPK Wrocław.

The new trams for Częstochowa are co-financed by the Regional Operational Program of the Silesian Voivodeship for 2014-2020 and the European Union. In addition to the purchase of trams, the project includes the renovation of ca. 7 km of tracks.

Pesa submitted the only offer in the tender for the purchase of 10 trams (with the option of up to five more). The infrastructure tender, announced in July 2017, covers the infrastructure works planned in the project. In May 2018, a contract worth PLN 114.5 million (25.3 million EUR) was signed with the NDI-Balzola consortium. The project includes the modernization of major parts of Częstochowa’s tram network which has a total length of 14.5 km. The work is ongoing and is scheduled to be finalised in summer 2020. The 4.5 km branch of line 3 to Raków is the latest addition to the network and was opened in 2012.

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