Olsztyn – double tram triumph

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Simulation of a tram journey on the yet-to-be-built route. Video by Olsztynska Telewizja Internetowa for U.M. Olsztyn.

Proponents of the planned brand new tram system in Olsztyn have two reasons to celebrate – not only did construction of the new travel system commence on 12 September, but also on 21 September a contract was signed with Solaris for the supply of 15 Tramino trams.

Construction works on ul. Ploskiego. Photo U.M. Olsztyn.

Olsztyn lost its small 6 km tram system in 1965 when it was one of several smaller Polish towns and cities that decided that trams no would no longer play a part in their future transport arrangements.

Olsztyn Tramino. Graphic by Solaris Bus & Coach S.A.

The idea of building a new tram system in Olsztyn dates back to 2006 when a radical reconstruction of the town’s transport infrastructure was envisaged. Several different proposals were first analysed by consultants and then subjected to extensive public consultation. The result – a 105 million euro project for an integrated transport systems. 85% of the cost will come from the EU regional development bidget, 15% from the city council’s own funds. When the project is completed in 2014, Olsztyn will have gained a modern public transport system with: ‘intelligent’ traffic lights, dedicated bus lanes and a 10.5 km tramway.

Old Olsztyn, Video ; Music Czerwony Tulipan.

Building work formally started in March this years, but actual construction work was delayed until September, because of problems with the ‘paperwork’. Meanwhile the procurement of trams was delayed when Pesa challenged the result of the first tender which had been won by Newag-Modertrans. Now, a second tender has been held, all legal obstacles have been cleared, and the construction of trams in the Solaris works in Poznan can begin.

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