First Look: ‘Mock-Up’ of Calgary Green Line LRV

Written by Marybeth Luczak, Executive Editor
The Green Line Light Rail Transit project’s 11.18-mile (18-kilometer) Phase I will use 28 CAF LRVs to connect southeast Calgary to downtown. Pictured: a recently delivered CAF Urbos 100 model.

The Green Line Light Rail Transit project’s 11.18-mile (18-kilometer) Phase I will use 28 CAF LRVs to connect southeast Calgary to downtown. Pictured: a recently delivered CAF Urbos 100 model.

CAF has supplied a mock-up of the new Urbos 100 LRV for the Green Line Light Rail Transit project in Calgary, Alberta.

The purpose of the model: “to validate Green Line’s technical requirements and ensure that Calgarians of all abilities can make use of this modern, safe and accessible transit option,” the city of Calgary reported on Nov. 29. “The operator’s cab was also designed to be split apart from the remainder of the mock-up to serve as a training simulator for future operators of the Green Line LRV.”

CAF (Construcciones y Auxiliar de Ferrocarriles) in November 2021 was selected to supply 28 low-floor LRVs for the Green Line project. Stage I of that project includes two phases. Phase I will connect southeast Calgary to downtown—11.18 miles (18 kilometers) from Shepard to Eau Claire (see map, left)—and link to the existing Red and Blue lines and four MAX BRT (Bus Rapid Transit) routes. It includes 0.93 miles (1.5 kilometers) of tunnel under Beltline and Downtown (6 Street S.E. along 11 Avenue to 2 Street S.W. at the planned Eau Claire Promenade); four LRT bridge structures that span across the Elbow River, Bow River, Deerfoot Trail and Blackfoot Trail; 13 stations; and an LRV maintenance storage facility. It will support future expansion to the north and south. Phase 2 will run 1.2 miles (2 kilometers) from Eau Claire to 16 Avenue North.

The Green Line project has C$4.9 billion in funding commitments from the government of Canada, government of Alberta and the city of Calgary, according to the city.

CAF’s Urbos 100 is said to use modern, low-floor technology, and the LRV’s eight entrances will dock level with station platforms to provide a safer and more convenient boarding experience for riders, the city reported. The model (watch video above) is approximately 39 feet (12 meters) long, representing just over a quarter of the actual LRV length, and weighs in at about 26,455 pounds (12,000 kilograms), representing 20% of the estimated weight of the actual vehicle, according to the city of Calgary. It is constructed primarily of steel, wood and plastic, and includes a combination of real and simulated components representative of the actual LRV.

“From a technical perspective, the Urbos 100 LRV has met all of our requirements in a service proven platform,” Green Line LRV Systems and Systems Integration Manager Shakti Sarai said. “It represents a combination of the best lessons learned from 41 years of Calgary Transit LRV operation and 20 years of CAF refining the Urbos LRV.”

A Request for Qualifications (RFQ) for a Development Partner to design, build and finance Phase 1 was released in April. The Green Line Board later approved the release of the Request for Proposals (RFP) to the two proponent teams: Bow Transit Connectors (Barnard Constructors of Canada LP, Flatiron Constructors Canada Ltd., and WSP Canada Inc.) and City Link Partners (Aecon Infrastructure Management Inc., Dragados Canada Inc., Acciona Infrastructure Canada Inc., Parsons Inc., and AECOM Canada Ltd.), which were short-listed through the RFQ stage.

“Following evaluation, one of the proponents will be selected in early 2023 as the Development Partner,” according to the project website. “This will launch an approximately 12-month Development Phase to allow for collaboration, design progression, and better understanding of risks and costs in an open and transparent manner.”

Phase 1 procurement
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