Sydney's new light rail system will feature futuristic wire-free trams to ensure clutter-free streets

09 - Sep - 2013

Source: news.com.au, edited by Alexa D

 

EAT your heart out, Melbourne - Sydney's new light rail system will feature futuristic wire-free trams to ensure that George St stays clutter-free.

Using the latest "zip-charge" technology popular in Europe and Asia, our transport revolution will be free of Melbourne's "visually intrusive wire jungles".

New research before Sydney City Council reveals 84 per cent of people want the light rail with no strings attached, calling the power wires "visually intrusive" and "jungles" - while 16 per cent were worried about the cost of a wire-free tram.

Wire-free trams run on batteries recharged at stops, with new light rail networks in Nanjing, China, planning for just 10 per cent of the route to be on a wire.

A Transport for NSW spokesman said it was intended that light rail vehicles would operate without overhead wires within the pedestrian zone between Hunter and Bathurst streets, except at stops where overhead wires may be required for charging purposes.

"There is also potential for wire-free operations in other areas," he added.

Sydney City Council has pushed for catenary-free trams instead of poles and wires, calling for the tram's power supply to be attached to existing buildings like Sydney's former tramway.

"This will ensure there is minimal infrastructure in the street and that space is preserved for pedestrians.

It will also reduce the visual impact of the system, respecting the streetscape of George St and its heritage buildings," the council's George St Concept Design report said.

"An increasing number of modern light rail systems use batteries and advanced power electronics.''


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An artist impression of the proposed light rail without wires on George St in Sydney's CBD

An artist impression of the proposed light rail
without wires on George St in Sydney's CBD