Impression of Salt Lake City LRV (Siemens).

USA: Utah Transit Authority gave Siemens notice to proceed with the production of 77 Avanto S70 light rail vehicles for Salt Lake City on May 15. The $277m order is the fourth UTA has placed with Siemens, and the manufacturer's largest US light rail contract.

The cars are needed for UTA's 'Frontlines 2015' programme which includes TRAX light rail services to the international airport, West Jordan, West Valley City and Draper. They will be built in Sacramento for delivery as the routes open, with all in service by 2012. The order includes an option for 180 cars, most of which are expected to be offered to other operators at a price lower than they could obtain individually; San Diego Trolley is a potential customer.

UTA currently operates 40 Siemens SD160 LRVs, plus 29 UTDC vehicles which were acquired second hand from Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority. The new vehicles will be 24·8 m long, slightly shorter than ones operating in San Diego and Charlotte because UTA wants to run four-car trains using existing platforms.

  • The city of Charlotte has exercised a final option with Siemens for a further four LRVs for the LYNX Blue Line. To be delivered within 24 months at a cost of $15m, they will being the fleet to 20.