GERMANY: Tram operator Verkehrsbetriebe Brandenburg an der Havel is testing bicycle-safe tram line cover profiles to improve pedestrian and cyclist safety in the city’s old town.
To date, four experimental 3 m long sections of tramway have been fitted with VeloGleis elastomer profiles supplied by Sealable Solutions. These to fill the grooves in embedded tram rails, enabling pedestrians to walk and cyclists to ride over them safely.
When trams encounter these profiles, they are pushed down under the weight of the vehicle, before springing back into place, safely covering the gap in the rails again.
The technology is already in use in Köln, Düsseldorf and Basel, where the Bruderholzstrasse tram stop has been fitted with VeloGleis elements over a length of almost 60 m.
The cost of rails works out at 1·4 times that of standard trackforms. They must also be inspected more frequently, but the elastomer profiles are able to last up to two years. The manufacturer says that the system can be retrofitted to existing track and is easy to clean or replace.