Historic milestone for LU as final S-Stock train is delivered to Ruislip depot
29 November 2016 • Author(s): Mandy Parrett, Editorial Assistant
London Underground (LU) has celebrated a major milestone with the final S-Stock train being delivered to the Ruislip depot. Transport for London explains that the train is the last of 192 built in the UK by Bombardier as part of the wider transformation of the Circle, District, Hammersmith & City and Metropolitan lines.
The modern trains are longer and more spacious, with brighter, air-conditioned interiors and dedicated spaces for wheelchair users. Currently in operation across the four lines, they will completely replace the older D-Stock trains that are due to be fully phased out by Spring 2017, thus completely rejuvenating the oldest part of the network.
S-Stock paves way to extensive improvement
Work is also underway to completely overhaul the ageing signalling and control systems that have been in place across the four lines since the early 20th century. The new signalling will allow LU to run more trains, more quickly; the expectation is for a 33 per cent increase in capacity across the four lines by the early 2020s. The new signalling is being provided by global transportation systems provider, Thales and is similar to that used on the Jubilee and Northern lines, where both performance and reliability have improved with journey times reduced.
Furthermore, the new trains are undergoing work at the BT Factory in Derby, where they are being fitted with a communications-based train control system before being returned into passenger service. The system has already been tested on a modified train at the Old Dalby test track in Leicester, to ensure its success. These upgrades will be completed in 2023, which is when the frequency of trains running during peak periods will rise to 32 trains per hour – a train every two minutes through central London.
Mark Wild, London Underground Managing Director, said: “The delivery of the final 192nd S-Stock train is a landmark moment in the history of London Underground, bringing us one step closer to modernising the oldest metro lines in the world. Once the new signalling system is complete in 2023, our customers will benefit from faster, more frequent and more reliable journeys.”
This next major phase of the Tube’s modernisation supports the creation of up to 1,100 jobs and 60 apprenticeships in London and across the UK.