ON FEBRUARY 7, the French municipality of Bordeaux announced that it had selected a consortium led by Alstom to build the 22·2 km first phase of the city’s planned three-line light rail network. Awarded a formal declaration of public utility at the end of January, the three lines are due to open at the beginning of 2003 (right). The second phase taking the network to 43·7 km would follow by 2007.

Valued at 260m euros, the turnkey contract covers project management, civil engineering, rolling stock and other E&M services. Alstom will be responsible for project management and co-ordination of the three sub-groups, plus the supply of rolling stock. The civil engineering group will be led by Fayat Entreprise TP, with CMR, Sofefi, Moter and Spie Trindel Acquitaine. The trackwork team led by Spie Enertrans will include Alstom and Cogifer TF.

Alstom is to supply 38 air-conditioned Citadis low-floor LRVs with ONIX traction drives and Arpège power bogies. There will be 32 cars 40m long able to carry 300 passengers and six of 30m carrying 200. There are also options for 24 long and eight shorter vehicles. Another option covers total maintenance of the network for the first 10 years.

The consortium has proposed a ground-level electrification system to avoid the need for overhead wires in the city centre, but the municipality has not yet decided whether to adopt this. n