Tuesday, February 10, 2009

NJ Transit sets sights on more EMUs

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After investing heavily in Bombardier multilevel cars to augment its fleet, New Jersey Transit now says it’s ready to acquire electric multiple-unit (EMU) equipment to supplement its existing fleet of Arrow III cars, and eventually retire those cars.

NJT has issues requests for proposals, according to Executive Director Richard Sarles, who observed, “Certain areas [of the NJT rail network] need quick acceleration” provided by EMU equipment, such as on stretches of right-of-way with short intervals between stations. NJT’s 230 Arrow III cars were last rebuilt beginning in the late 1980s.

Sarles said any EMU order would be funded through the state Transportation Trust Fund.

Not clear at this point is whether the order will include diesel units, with the “D” units allowing train consists to travel in both electrified and diesel rail territory; two major NJT routes, the North Jersey Coast Line and Boonton/Montclair Line, are electrified in part.