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New designs for Melbourne’s trains that would make trips faster, smoother and feature a London Tube-style seating layout are feared to have stalled, putting local manufacturing jobs under threat.
Leaked designs by French train maker Alstom for new X'Trapolis trains reveal plans to improve the train’s suspension to make the ride less bumpy, modernise train doors to cut the time it takes for passengers to get on and off, and build new signs on carriages that would track the train’s journey in real-time.
An artist's impression of the preliminary design of the new X'Trapolis 2.0 trains.
If the Andrews government refuses to commit to building the 'X'Trapolis 2.0' trains designed to carry 1200 passengers, the company is expected to launch an exit plan from its Ballarat manufacturing facility, where about 70 people currently work, within two months.
Closure of the facility owned by Alstom over the past two decades would be a major blow to Ballarat and likely have a ripple effect across the state's rail supply chain.
Preliminary designs created by Alstom in conjunction with the Victorian Department of Transport outline a plan for 20 new X'Trapolis 2.0 trains to be built at Ballarat, in order to retire the aged Comeng trains by 2026, which is four years earlier than current plans.
Alstom's preliminary design for the X'Trapolis 2.0 trains.
Features of the proposed new trains include:
This article first appeared on www.theage.com.au
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