The second line in the Valenciennes tram network was opened on Friday December 13, in the presence of Frédéric Cuvillier, France’s Minister for Transport, the Sea and Fishing, Francis Decourrière, President of the SITURV1, Valérie Létard, President of the Valenciennes Métropole council, Laurent Degallaix, mayor of Valenciennes, and Jérôme Wallut, Managing Director of Alstom Transport France. The new line, 15.5 km long, serves 22 stations and will open towards the end of February 2014.
To mark the opening of the line, Alstom delivered nine trams, ordered by the city in 2010, to increase the tram network's transport capacity. They will be added to the current fleet of 21 trams2 running on the first line, which links the University of Valenciennes with Denain. In all, 30 trams will run on the two lines.
The new Citadis trams supplied by Alstom to the city of Valenciennes are identical to the 21 trams already in operation. They are 33 metres long, carry up to 295 passengers and offer a high level of comfort on board, with low floors throughout, a wide aisle, air conditioning, comfortable seats, large windows and a video surveillance system.
98% recyclable, Citadis helps protect the environment. It also contributes to the quality of life in cities with a noise level 5 dBA lower than that generated by car traffic, meaning nearly four times less noise. Since it entered service, about 5 million tonnes of CO2 emissions have been avoided.
Seven of Alstom's ten industrial sites in France took part in the Valenciennes Citadis project: La Rochelle for the tram design and construction, Valenciennes for the studies, Ornans for the motors, Le Creusot for the bogies, Tarbes for the powertrain equipment and Villeurbanne for the command and control electronics.
Alstom Transport's tram business supports 4,400 jobs in France at Alstom and its suppliers. Alstom has already sold 1,726 Citadis trams to date in 43 cities worldwide, 21 of them in France, and these trams have carried 6 billion passengers, 3 million a day.
1 - Syndicat Intercommunal pour les Transports Urbains de la Région de Valenciennes
2 - Entered into service in 2006