PUBLIC transport operator Sitcat has confirmed plans to build an initial 17 km tram route in the French city of Toulon. Due to open in 2005, the line will run from La Seyne-sur-Mer eastwards to La Garde, with 26 intermediate stations.

The route was agreed in an urban transport programme approved by voters at the end of last year, but further consultation will be needed before the Fr1·2bn project can go ahead using a joint funding package from the state and local authorities.

Services will be worked by a fleet of 26 Sirio light rail cars to be supplied by AnsaldoBreda; able to run at 70 km/h, the cars will have a crush load of 242.

In a second phase of construction, the line will be extended at the western end to reach H Barbusse and Pin Rolland, and at the eastern end to Quatre Saisons. n