19 June 2020

Canberra’s light rail nerve centre is now fully operational

| My Gungahlin
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Canberra’s new state-of-the-art light rail depot in Mitchell is now fully operational, and will be the engine-room behind Canberra’s light rail system.

Minister for Transport Meegan Fitzharris joined Canberra Metro CEO Glenn Stockton to tour the facility today, which will house the 14 light rail vehicles and operate 24/7, 365 days of the year.

“It’s really exciting to see the depot now fully up and running, supporting the light rail system as it enters the final stages of testing,” Minister Fitzharris said.

“We are expecting thousands of passengers to use light rail each day and the depot will play a huge role in making sure the system works efficiently and is an enjoyable experience for Canberrans.

“The commissioning of the depot is another important milestone in the light rail project that brings us closer to passenger services commencing.”

Canberra’s fleet of 14 light rail vehicles will call the depot home, along with around 100 staff including 33 drivers, 16 customer service officers and a number of operational control centre duty managers who will monitor the light rail corridor day and night to keep passengers safe and the light rail network secure.

Mr Stockton said, “The depot hosts some of the latest security technology including live stream CCTV monitors on board light rail vehicles and at each stop to ensure safety. GPS tracking systems across the network enable us to provide real-time route information so that passengers always know when the next LRV is arriving.

“Within the operational control centre, not only will trained operators manage and supervise the performance of the light rail system, they’ll also work with emergency services in responding to and providing an immediate response to any incidents along the alignment,” said Mr Stockton.

The light rail depot incorporates several best practice environmental design features including solar power generation and rain water collection for use throughout plumbing, as well as a sophisticated recycling process for all waste materials.

The light rail depot boasts a range of features that are integral to an operating rail system, including:

  • a back-up operations control centre
  • an automatic vehicle location system that monitors the real time position of vehicles on the alignment and the performance of services
  • high-tech communications system including radios, public address and live passenger information displays
  • a maintenance facility for regular checks and repairs of light rail vehicles
  • the stabling yard to hold light rail vehicles at night
  • a light rail vehicle wash bay that uses recycled water.

“The first sod for the project was turned here on this site just over 31 months ago. It’s come a long way during that time and it’s great to see the depot now up and running,” said Minister Fitzharris.

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