Recent developments in Tram-Freight
This is partly a follow-up to earlier discussions on
the Carfree Cities list about supercapacitors powering
catenary-free rail vehicles, a discussion (?) of the
Dresden tram-freight system and the Metro-Freight
section of "Carfree Cities", starting on pg. 199. I
will include all relevant links.
The first modern tram-freight system started in 2000
in Dresden. It (ironically) carries parts for a VW
luxury SUV to a facility in the centre of Dresden.
which is in German OR if you go through the links
which is about the expanding Zurich trash tram (in
English)you will be able to find info about the
Dresden scheme in English.
Another scheme, for which you can find
English-language info through the www.proaktiva.ch
site is <http://www.gueterbim.at/> for the system
started in Vienna (in German).
Finally, there is the following, from
about a possible tram-freight scheme in Den Haag (The
I would just search the term "cargo" on the
This is a PDF with the Zurich recycling train
schedule, including a cute graphic:
This is a nice long article about the Dresden scheme.
Finally, there is a Yahoo! Group about tram-freight
(in German): <http://de.groups.yahoo.com/group/cgtr/>
All these Western cities are trying different
things... none seem to use standard shipping
containers (not sure why, too wide?). All stay on the
rails or a siding; no one is trying out "T. van Popta"
scheme mentioned on pg. 204 of "Carfree Cities",which
uses (retractable?) rubber tyres to get to its final
It would be great if everyone could figure out a
standard design to cut costs!
As a cyclist, I actually dont mind trams and
tramtracks too much because I know exactly where they
are. But alot of sidings would create problems for
cyclists, might need extra catenary (unless system
from trolley-buses is used), so would cost a lot.
Rubber tyres would be advantageous as they are very
flexible. The hybrid steel/rubber cargo-tram could
unload and load anywhere, as long as there are no
steep hills or tight corners.
This would all be an interesting logistics
challenge... but isnt that what supercomputers are
Maybe it is not that hard to do.
Any new system of lightrail is a great place to
implement this. It might even make it more financially
viable if cargo can also use "expensive" lightrail
Green Idea Factory
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