Marseille unveils driverless train design
The Aix-Marseille-Provence Region, Alstom and a designer from Marseille have finalised the design of both the interior and exterior of the city’s new metro vehicles. The first batch will start to appear on the tracks in 2023 for a test phase. The new fleet is due to enter revenue service with drivers in 2024 and to go driverless, after the installation of platform screen doors, by end 2026 (line M2) and end 2027 (line M1).
Following a consultation with the inhabitants of the region, the final design of the vehicles was chosen by a ballot, in which the winning design received 44% of the votes cast. The design is inspired by the region with the Mediterranean sunlight of Marseille being the main theme.
Accessibility was also a main focus, ensuring that all can easily travel by metro by having a floorplan that takes different abilities into account. Trains and the train-platform interface were designed through an iterative process involving PRM associations.
The vehicles have also been designed so that up to 96% of the vehicle can be recovered and recycled. Its green credentials also include a reduction of 25% of electricity thanks to electric brakes, LED lighting and other upgrades.
The modernisation of the system does not stop at the vehicles, but extends to the stations, 7 of which will be fully accessible by 2023 with 16 more starting their upgrades in 2024. Some stations such as Saint-Margueritte and Capitaine Gèze have already had lifts installed.
The conversion of Marseille’s two metro lines to fully automated operations was announced in 2015.
Source: RTM, Métropole Aix-Marseille-Provence, Alstom