You may recall that the government has funded the purchase of 35 units of 4-carriage Kelana Jaya line trains, 5 of which have been turned over to Prasarana (of which 3 are being tested).
Unfortunately, Prasarana and RapidKL do not seem to be sharing much in details about what new features we can hope to see from the new trains.
After all, the original Kelana Jaya line trains were built more than 10 years ago. The expectations of passengers have changed since 1996. In addition, concerns about hygiene are very significant to the public now.
TRANSIT has always hoped that Prasarana and RapidKL would be more forth coming about bus and train design, especially in terms of the interior. After all, we as the end users are the ones who ultimately use the designs and if we are not happy we will vote with our RM (in other words, people will buy cars).
Note: As you can imagine, KTMB is also included in the above list, as well as the other public transport operators.
Something to consider.
By the way, over in Singapore things are a little bit different:
Train in final industrial design stage
1. The Downtown Line (DTL) train mock-up has arrived in Singapore on 4 October 2009 and is on display at the Land Transport Authority’s (LTA) Hampshire Road office.
2. Mr Yam Ah Mee, Chief Executive, LTA, said, “Our MRT trains have evolved with technology over the years. We have started with driver-operated trains for the North-South and East-West Lines, and have progressed to driverless fully automatic trains for the North-East, Circle and Downtown Lines. We are continuously learning and improving in order to give commuters a better travelling experience.
3. “Similar to all our previous MRT lines, our contract for DTL train has provisions for a train mock-up as part of the pre-final design works. This mock-up has been delivered to us for the purpose of evaluating the new design features, quality of the workmanship of the carbody and the train interior finishing during the final industrial design stage.”
New Train Features for Evaluation
4. The DTL train aims to provide a new ride experience to commuters. Several new features different from our existing trains are proposed and depicted in the mock-up for LTA’s assessment.
5. Some of these new features include:
a) New train seat profile
The train seat profile is new and designed with the comfort of commuters in mind. Ergonomic considerations have been taken into account in the design of the curves of the seat.
b) Reserved seats in red colour
The reserved seats are coloured red for clear and obvious differentiation of seats catered for commuters with special needs.
c) Perch seats (Alternative to the two-seaters)
The two-seaters in the gangway area have been converted to perch seats, except for two wheelchair spaces in the centre car of the train. Perch seats create a wider standing space for commuters. They also encourage commuters to move towards the end of the train and provide greater ease of movement during boarding or alighting from the train.
d) Dynamic route map display
The dynamic route map display provides commuters with their current journey status and route information. Additionally, it indicates the side of doors that will open.
e) New design of straphangers
A new design of straphangers, which is also used in other metros worldwide, offers commuters a steadier grip during train journeys.
f) Two-tone flooring
The two-tone flooring is an aesthetically new design.
6. Existing features such as two rows of overhead rail with straphangers and triplicated poles are retained for commuters to hold on to during the train journey. These features also serve to encourage commuters to move inwards, away from the doorway.
7. The use of new technology in the train’s power generation and drive systems is one of the key features of the environmental-friendly train. The ability to apply regenerative brake over a larger speed range during operation provides higher energy recovery and reduces brake wear. In addition, the application of medium-frequency converters in power generation helps in the reduction of overall energy consumption. There will be a weight saving of 1.4 tonnes per train, which over the life of the train, would translate to an energy saving of approximately 8,000 kilowatt hour per year.
8. Contract 951 is for the procurement of 73 three-car trains for DTL. The Contract was awarded to the consortium Bombardier Transportation GmbH / Bombardier (Singapore) Pte Ltd in November 2008.
9. The DTL trains are designed in Germany and manufactured in Changchun, China.
About Downtown Line
10. At 40 km with 33 stations, DTL is the longest fully underground rail project to date and will run through high-traffic and built-up corridors. With the DTL, the connectivity of the existing rail network will be strengthened. The DTL will facilitate direct travel from the northwestern and eastern areas of the island to the Central Business District and the Marina Bay. It also provides a strategic transport link to support the development of the Marina Bay area.
11. DTL is projected to see a daily ridership of around 500,000 when in full operation.