EghtesadOnline: To develop Tehran’s subway network, a multilateral contract has been signed to involve domestic knowledge-based companies in the production of rolling stock.
Early this week, a deal was signed by Vice President for Science and Technology Sorena Sattari, Tehran Mayor Pirouz Hanachi, chairman of Iran National Innovation Fund Ali Vahdat, the head of the Academic Center for Education, Culture and Research, Hamidreza Tayyebi, CEO of Tehran Urban and Suburban Railway Company Ali Emam and a senior official of MAPNA Locomotive Company, Ahmad Khodaei, for wagon production, Mehr News Agency reported.
The entities will collaborate to produce a single-car train as a pilot project in the deal's first phase. The train is set to be completed within 18 months.
In the second phase, as per the contract, 420 subway cars will be produced within five years, according to Financial Tribune.
The deal, which is aimed at increasing the share of domestic companies in Tehran’s subway manufacture, also involves knowledge-based companies and related production units.
Active collaboration in the design of locomotives, wagons, rail track, stations and additional equipment with the help of international experts is also envisaged in the agreement.
Speaking at the signing ceremony, Sattari emphasized the need to localize technologies used in subway development and called on all domestic tech firms and knowledge-based companies for assistance.
"The joint agreement will boost the share of domestic production in subway facilities to 85%," he added.
Ali Vahdat said INIF is to financially support technological ideas and products of knowledge-based companies to help implement the project.
Pirouz Hanachi said an integrated collaboration is required to take measures for developing clean means of transportation in the capital.
He said improving subway network services with the help of local companies and experts is possible, if talented tech teams and knowledge-based firms are supported.
"At least 2,000 new cars are needed for improving services offered by the capital’s subway network," he said.
Tehran’s subway network stretches over 220 kilometers and comprises seven lines (1 to 7) with nearly 120 stations. Line 6 and 7 are still under construction.
Three new lines (8 to 10) are also being mapped for areas lacking access to subway lines.
According to the latest data released by Tehran Urban and Suburban Railway Company, 1,230 subway cars, or 157 trains, are currently operating in the capital's metro network.
An agreement was signed in January by Tehran Municipality, Beijing Rail Transit Technology Equipment Group Co. and the local Pars Wagon Company in Markazi Province to add 367 subway cars to the capital’s metro network.
The cars are to be delivered by 2022 and each wagon will cost $976,000, Metro.tehran.ir reported. The whole project is estimated to cost $366.9 million.
According to Mohsen Pourseyed-Aqaei, managing director of Tehran Municipality Transportation and Traffic Organization, the cars will be used in the under-construction Line 7.
Late June, 70 complete knock-down subway cars were released from customs which, according to Hanachi, would be immediately hooked to the capital’s subway network after assembly.
"The new cars, which will form 10 complete trains, will be employed in the partly operating lines 6 and 7, which currently have a long headway time between trains," Hanachi told Tasnim News Agency at the time.
All the trains will be added to the subway network by October, he added.
Additionally, the Interior Ministry is also working to supply 600 cars to the subway network, the mayor has been quoted as saying. He did not elaborate.
Hanachi said the share of subway in Tehran’s public transportation network is 16%.
"The network needs more trains and shorter headway to reach its maximum transport capacity," he said, adding that the headway now ranges from 2 to 15 minutes, which should reduce to 2 minutes.
Despite facing challenges, the development of public transportation, especially the subway network, is the best solution for curbing the worsening traffic and air pollution in metropolises like Tehran.
The city’s transportation and environmental conditions will improve faster if timely budget allocations are made and the authorities enforce strict oversight over the implementation of these projects.