Once an integral part of every city until it gave the way to the dominance of road transport, the tram has received a new lease of life over recent years.
The appeal of the modern tram, which can transport from 7000 to 30 000 passengers per day per line, has spread to smaller cities aiming to satisfy increasing demand for reliable and regular services which are not affected on the ground by heavy traffic or poor weather conditions. Indeed, one French politician has been heard to say that to be seen as a city that counts, one had to have a certain (Swedish) furniture store and a tram system!
Keolis is today the world's leading tram operator, with the latest addition of the Melbourne tram system in December 2012, one of the largest networks in the world with nearly 553 km of track. Keolis is also part of the ViaPORTO consortium which took over the Porto light rail system in April 2010.
As part of it public service delegations in France, Keolis runs 9 tram systems totalling 17 lines, linking them up seamlessly with the rest of the public transport network.
Partner of public transport authorities
Keolis acts as a partner to local authorities who have new tram projects or plans to extend existing lines. An operator's viewpoint is extremely valuable to the financial viability of a project, because even if initial investment is high, the profitability of the system will ultimately be dependent on annual operating costs, of which Keolis' experts have a clear view thanks to their extensive experience and knowledge sharing approach.
Keolis can therefore bring its expertise to all areas of the project: from design to operations via the procurement of rolling stock and driver training and simulation
This partnership philosophy is key to the success of a launch and was particularly present in the run-up to the June 2010 launch of the Bergen tram system in Norway. Keolis mobilised experts from four different countries and from different fields of expertise in order to advise the public transport authority on all areas of operations and planning.
Keolis is also adviser and partner to new projects in Angers, Tours, Brest, Lens and Dijon.
Trams in all their forms:
Three types of trams can exist, according to the material and the environment:
- traditional tracked tram running on iron rails an with iron wheels,
- the rubber-mounted tram, running either in its own traffic lane or in the general flow of traffic
- the tram-train, running on suburban railway lines
Keolis tram figures:
- 553 km of track
- 2280 tram stops
- Nearly 40 lines
- 960 vehicles
- More than 470 million passengers per year