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Cargo tram pilot expected soon

24 November 2006 – The city administration has set conditions for cargo transport by tram. The CityCargo Company wants to start a pilot at the Cornelis Lelylaan – Amstelveenseweg – Stadionweg trajectory by early January at the latest.

The company plans to have cargo trams operational at a large scale by 2012. This should reduce the number of lorries within the city ring by 2,500, making it possible to cancel some of the 1,800 parking spaces for lorries.

The city’s appearance will become quieter and bicycle safety will improve, CityCargo’s Peter Hendriks expects. Reducing the number of lorries will reduce congestion and air pollution as well. The municipality expects a 15% fine particle reduction.

The administration stipulated that a cargo tram pilot may not harm passenger trams. Further, cargo trams are only allowed to ride between 7 am and 11 pm. These conditions pose no problem for CityCargo, Hendriks said. The city council still has to approve the conditions. According to Hendriks, council members are enthusiastic about the concept.

The trams will only use tram trajectories that are not heavily used by passenger trams and they will only stop on ‘dead tracks’ that passenger trams do not normally use. More capacity is expected to become available because of the construction of the North/South line and because, in the future, only certified ‘quality taxis’ will be allowed to use the public transport lanes.

CityCargo wants to start a pilot in Amsterdam West by the end of December or early January. Trams will be rented from the Municipal Transportation Company (GVB) and will be slightly modified. In the future, the company will build its own trams and intends to enter the city from the North, East and South as well.

Potential clients include transportation companies, which now lose a lot of time driving their lorries in and out of town. In addition, companies such as Heineken, eager to be associated with innovative concepts with a positive image, might be interested.

Tram cargo has never before been tested in this form. Trams are used to supply a Volkswagen factory in Dresden and to collect garbage in Zürich, but in those cases the concept is far less complicated.


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