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Perth community gets chance to ride trackless tram

trackless trams

Australia’s first trackless tram went through its paces over the weekend, in a trial that Perth’s City of Stirling hopes will see this mid-tier transit become a future public transport service connecting Glendalough Train Station to the iconic Scarborough Beach precinct.

The 30-metre-long vehicle arrived at the City in September and is currently undergoing a range of tests by experts from across Australia. This research will be used to understand how the vehicle operates, the impacts on the road surface and what the ride quality for passengers is like.

A community event held in conjunction with the Stirling Farmers Markets’ 12th birthday on Sunday provided the local community with a chance to take part in the trial.

Mayor Mark Irwin said it was important to understand what the community thought about the trackless tram.

“They will be the future users of this public transport system and we want to know whether this is going to encourage them to make the switch out of their cars and onto the tram to get from the City to the beach,” he said.

“The benefits offered by the trackless tram could be a game-changer for urban regeneration in the city and set a new transport benchmark Australia-wide.

“A permanent tram route in the City of Stirling would enable us to achieve a range of positive economic, business, transport and sustainability outcomes – reducing congestion and improving access to employment and tourist destinations.”

The project is being delivered with partners Curtin University, CRRC, Shanghai Electric and Infrastructure Technology Solutions.

Meanwhile, Monash University has called on the Victorian government to follow in Stirling’s footsteps, and place priority on the Caulfield-Rowville Trackless Rapid Transit (TRT) proposal.

The joint initiative by Monash and Vicinity Centres aims to create an innovative transport solution for Melbourne’s South-Eastern Economic Corridor using dedicated lanes along a 19km route from Caulfield to Rowville.

Monash Deputy Vice Chancellor Enterprise and Engagement, Professor Doron Ben-Meir, said the technology would deliver a much-needed east-west solution in the short-term, while paving the way to a truly integrated transport network, interchangeable with the Suburban Rail Loop.

Under the TRT proposal, 13 new stations are proposed, including at Carnegie, Oakleigh, Mount Waverley, Clayton, Mulgrave, and Wheelers Hill, as well as at Chadstone and Monash University.

“ It is estimated the project will create $5.7 billion in economic value through supporting the further development of activity centres along the route,” Ben-Meir said.

“By connecting major economic hubs, TRT will drive transformational growth in Melbourne’s south-east. By 2040, TRT and associated development on the route is expected to create an additional 33,700 jobs in the south-east.

“TRT will provide a new commuting option for the 12,900 workers in the Holmesglen-Chadstone precinct, and provide a new connection to the Monash Technology Precinct which supports 95,000 jobs.

“It will also take around 600,000 car trips off the roads every day and TRT vehicles could move up to 1800 passengers per hour in each direction.”