Moscow Trams win Global Light Rail Awards

Moscow Trams win Global Light Rail Awards
Photo by Yevgeny Samarin,
The city’s tram system has scored its first major victory and received the Global Light Rail Awards in the Most Improved System category.

The best urban transport systems receive these annual awards on a global basis. This is the first such victory for the city’s trams. Moscow competed with Spanish, Swiss, Dutch and other city systems.

“I congratulate all Moscow Tram system workers on this victory. The Moscow Tram system, which started carrying passengers as far back as the late 19th century, continues to be developed. It is one of the city’s symbols and the second-largest system in terms of capacity after the Moscow Metro. It is also very adaptable, spacious, environmentally friendly and reliable. There are plans to completely replace the tram fleet by 2024,” said Deputy Moscow Mayor Maxim Liksutov, Head of the Department of Transport and Road Infrastructure Development.

The jury members noted the Moscow Tram’s passenger-friendly and modern light rail carriages, efforts to separate the tracks from streets, the addition of more convenient stops, the use of modern and environmentally friendly technologies, such as eco-friendly cross-ties and traffic signal priority. They also noted the preservation of city traditions, including annual tram parades that attract about 250,000 spectators.

The city has almost 420 km of tram lines and 40 routes. In all, about 700,000 passengers used them daily prior to the COVID-19 pandemic. In the past ten years, the city has replaced 70 percent of the tram fleet, which now has 450 modern carriage units, including 375 quiet Vityaz-Moskva trams with their smooth ride. An additional 109 new-generation tram carriages will enter service by the end of next year, and all of the old trams will be gone by early 2024.