It’s an order of a double, double, double — one that will eventually lead to 24-hour LRT service in Calgary, according to Calgary’s mayor.
Dave Bronconnier said Calgarians will be the benefactors of the first 38 new Next Generation SD160 air-conditioned C-Train cars, which will help meet the increased demand on Calgary’s transit system and allow for four-train cars.
“We’re doubling the track, we’re doubling the cars and we’re doubling the capacity for our customers using the C-Train,” Bronconnier said alongside Premier Ed Stelmach at the unveiling of the new cars.
The new cars can house up to almost 400 more passengers, making a four-car train capable of carrying almost 1,000 passengers.
“For those customers squeezed in cars for too long, this is welcome news.”
Bronconnier said the news paired with future investments means more good things for Calgarians and their Calgary Transit.
“Won’t be that far into the future you won’t see the C-Train running 24 hours a day,” Bronco added.
The purchase of the much-needed cars was a result of a $136-million partnership with the provincial government through the Municipal Sustainability Initiative.
Stelmach said he believes Calgary has the most popular LRT system in North America and the investment will spur future riders.
“Investing in public transit encourages more people to leave their cars at home, reduce emissions and clear up traffic congestion while improving quality of life,” Stelmach said.
Since 2001, Calgary Transit ridership has increased approximately 25 per cent and the number of cars in the fleet has ballooned from 83 to 155 once the remaining cars arrive by 2001.
Rider Christy Denali welcomes the news and hopes the rider to and from work will be smoother.
“I hope it’s not as crowded but I think it should really help rush hour traffic,” Denali said.