posted on 3rd Jul 2023 07:21
Talbot Services is refurbishing and redesigning 35 Coradia Continental EMUs on behalf of Alpha Trains. The first converted trains have been presented to the public at the Talbot works in Aachen on 30 June 2023.
The previous and new operator of the fleet is NordWestBahn, a subsidiary of the French Transdev Group, which operates the trains on the 270-kilometre network of the Regio-S-Bahn Bremen/Niedersachsen (RSBN). Work began in the Aachen workshop in January 2023. To date, Talbot has completed nine trains, and the remaining 26 ones will be successively refurbished by March 2025. To ensure the quick and smooth refurbishment of the entire fleet, the project team converted the first train as a prototype in advance.
NordWestBahn has been operating the RSBN network since December 2010 and was awarded the new transport contract, which runs until December 2036, following a Europe-wide tendering procedure. In December 2022, 16 new Stadler Flirt XL trains were added to the existing Coradia fleet, bringing the total number of Alpha Trains’ EMUs in operation in and around the Hanseatic city to 51.
The close partnership between the operator, the public transport authority, the refurbishment company and the lessor is a crucial advantage for the project. The Alpha Trains engineering team is responsible for project management and can draw on a wealth of experience and expertise. The specifications for the conversion measures were prepared according to the requirements of the public transport authority, the technical design was developed in close collaboration with Talbot Services and the construction of the prototype was closely monitored.
The trains are all being equipped with Wi-Fi and 5G upgrades to provide passengers with a reliable internet connection throughout their journey. Moreover, a new passenger information system is being installed, with large screens and real-time information about connecting trains. A state-of-the-art video surveillance system, energy-efficient LED lighting, tinted scratch protection films and numerous power outlets are all being integrated in the vehicles. The trains are also being visually upgraded with a new livery in the Transdev design and a 21st-century interior with new seat upholstery and covers, armrests and tables.
Accessibility was also given a high priority when planning the conversion. The installation of a guide system for the blind and visually impaired, door buttons with a built-in location sound, and improved access to the spacious, multi-purpose storage area for prams, wheelchairs and bicycles make the vehicles easier to use for mobility-impaired passengers.