In Greater Paris, the first train of the future new Tram-Train line T13 started test operations on 21 December 2021. Tests are run between Les Portes de Saint-Cyr and Lisière Pereire on the completely new or renewed tracks of the former Grande Ceinture Ouest railway line. The aim of this dynamic test phase is to check the power supply and the braking system of the tram-trains, among others, but also the correct integration of the tram at station level and the proper functioning of signals and traffic lights along the line.
Line T13 is one of three Tram-Train lines in the Paris metropolitan area that are mainly built on existing, partly unused railway lines, they provide tangential connections and are operated by the national rail service operator SNCF. For T12 and T13, this also includes some newly built sections in built-up areas where the trains will run as a “real” tramway. At T13, this is the case in the urban area of Saint-Germain-en-Laye. The first of the three new tram-train lines, the Épinay-sur-Seine – Le Bourget section of the T11 line, had already been opened in 2017. The first sections of T13 are scheduled to open in 2022, the T12 the following year.
Testing the T13
The dynamic tests will gradually increase with an initial phase of running at reduced speed and only over sections of the line. Speed increases will be gradual until the maximum permitted speeds are reached. As the tests progress, additional tram-train units will be put into operation on the entire line. This second test phase will take place until spring 2022. After that, the realistic trial operation (“marche à blanc”) will bein: This is a final rehearsal in which all trains run as in scheduled real operation, but still without passengers. The line from Saint-Germain-en-Laye to Saint-Cyr is scheduled to open revenue service in summer 2022. 20,000 weekday passengers are expected on this 18.8 km section, with a 10-minute frequency during rush hour and 20-minute frequency during the remaining of the day. At a later stage, the branch from Lisière Pereire to Achères is planned and will further increase the frequency.
Alstom delivered 11 Citadis Dualis four-module low floor tram-trains out of a framework agreement between SNCF and Alstom for up to 200 vehicles. These trains offer a total capacity of 251 passengers, 92 of them seated. They are 42 metres long and 2.65 metres wide and designed for a maximum speed of 100 km/h. In the Greater Paris area, in Île-de-France, these trains are already in use on T11 and T4.
The 11 trains of the tram-train line T13 were fully financed by Île-de-France Mobilités at a cost of €68.8 million. The total cost of the infrastructure for the T13 is €306.7 million.
(information provided by Île-de-France Mobilités)
The integration of the tram-train lines into the Île-de-France public transport network can be seen here: