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Rail Transport and Infrastructure

Alstom awarded its first tramway contract in Taiwan

     3rd March 2017 Multinational rail transport company Alstom has been awarded a contract by China Steel Corporation to supply fifteen Citadis trams for Phase 2 of the Kaohsiung tramway project, in Taiwan, which is expected to start revenue service in 2019. This tramway project – the first of its kind for Alstom... 

Extensive scope for remanufacture of locomotive components

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     3rd March 2017 Owing to substantial investment by government in imported railway locomotives in recent years, as well as its goal to prioritise localisation, heavy diesel engine and component remanufacturers Metric Automotive Engineering says there is extensive scope for the local remanufacture of locomotive... 

Extensive scope for  remanufacture of  locomotive components
Photo by Bloomberg
LOCAL IS LEKKER South Africa’s developing its capacity to remanufacture locomotive engine components can enable it to become a hub to serve Africa

JV completes Phase 1 of subway line

     3rd March 2017 Integrated firm AECOM and global firm Arup celebrated the completion of the first phase of the Second Avenue Subway for the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) earlier this year. It is the first major expansion of New York City subway system done by the AECOM-Arup Joint Venture (JV) in... 

JV completes Phase 1  of subway line
Photo by Bloomberg
SUCCESSFUL PROJECT The completion of the first phase of the Second Avenue Subway will improve travel for both city and suburban commuters on Manhattan’s east side

KPMG at forefront of PRASA rail infrastructure upgrades

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     3rd March 2017 Leading global advisory firm KPMG is providing full financial, commercial and localisation advisory services for one of public transport utility Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa’s (PRASA’s) projects currently under way. The rolling stock project, which reached financial close during the... 

KPMG at forefront of PRASA rail infrastructure upgrades
Photo by Duane Daws
PRASA PROJECT The Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa is replacing the entire metro rail fleet of South Africa through the provision of 3 600 new train car units

S Africa aims to improve poor maintenance of railway infrastructure

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     3rd March 2017 The inability of local rail infrastructure to attract sufficient revenue has led to a deficiency in the required sustaining capital necessary for its maintenance, says professional services consultancy WSP|Parsons Brinckerhoff infrastructure and transportation divisional director Vishaal... 

S Africa aims to improve poor maintenance of  railway infrastructure
Photo by Bloomberg
MANDATORY MAINTENANCE Several projects have been implemented or are under way to improve rail infrastructure in South Africa

Company completes Wolmerton rail project

By: Sascha Solomons     16th December 2016 Rail track construction, rehabilitation, electrification and maintenance provider Grindrod Rail Construction (GRC), in a joint venture with engineering company Bakara, has completed the rail refurbishment of the Wolmerton Depot. This forms part of the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa’s... 

Company completes Wolmerton rail project
WOLMERTON DEPOT The Wolmerton Depot overhaul falls under PRASA’s Depot Modernisation Programme

Execution of PRASA project contributes to outstanding results

     16th December 2016 Railway sector services provider Alstom Group announced in its “outstanding” fiscal year 2016/17 results that trains reached €1.6-billon sales, with ongoing execution of the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (PRASA) project in South Africa among other deliveries of suburban, regional and... 

Railway company investments to facilitate economic growth

By: Sascha Solomons     16th December 2016 The current investments by the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (PRASA) and State-owned freight utility Transnet will largely facilitate economic growth in South Africa through major infrastructure projects currently under way, says consulting and auditing firm KPMG infrastructure deal... 

Railway company investments to facilitate economic growth
Photo by Duane Daws
DE BUYS SCOTT investments by the PRASA and Transnet will largely facilitate economic growth in South Africa

Inspection device to provide safety in rail operations

By: Simon Sonnekus     29th July 2016 The Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) has developed a prototype survey and inspection device (SID) to survey and inspect South Africa’s railway lines, which is intended to improve safety and operations. Along with reporting on the condition of the rail infrastructure, the SID... 

Inspection device  to provide safety in  rail operations
DEBUT The CSIR's survey and inspection device (SID) was debuted at Africa Rail 2016

Local content priority for PRASA contract

     29th July 2016 French multinational rail transport company Alstom, which has a controlling stake in local rail transport consortium Gibela, has reinforced its commitment to ensuring local content forms a significant portion of the multibillion-rand contract signed between Gibela and the Passenger Rail Agency of... 

Stability and cohesion a way forward for African rail sector

By: Simon Sonnekus     29th July 2016 Companies are under pressure from government and the public to embark on new projects while there are still projects that need to be completed. The countless delays across the rail expansions are concerning, says the RailRoad Association of South Africa (RRA). Negative sentiments by the industry... 

Stability and cohesion a way forward for African rail sector
Photo by Duane Daws
DELAYS Negative sentiments by the industry on implementing the designation policy and delays of some rail projects have led to discussions with Trade and Industry Minister Dr Rob Davies

GB14 passenger Bo-Bo loco launched by Grindrod

     26th July 2016 Rail engineering solutions provider Grindrod Locomotives has implemented over 20 shunting solutions across Africa, including the latest delivery of six locomotives to the Cote d'Ivoire Sitarail operations since developing its shunting product range in 2012. This GS7 shunting product is a three... 

GB14 passenger  Bo-Bo loco launched  by Grindrod

Conference celebrates 19 years of success

By: Victor Moolman     24th June 2016 The longest running rail conference and exhibition in Africa, Africa Rail, will mark its nineteenth year of existence, says international business to business media company Terrapinn. 

Conference celebrates 19 years of success
CONFERENCE Several conference will run concurrently with the Africa Rail 2016 event

German train operator orders more train units

     24th June 2016 Rail technology leader Bombardier Transportation has won a contract to supply German rail operator Abellio Rail Südwest GmbH with 43 Bombardier Talent 2 multiple unit trains. The order is valued at about €215-million. 

German train operator orders more train units
INCREASED PASSENGER COUNT The new multiple unit trains will have up to 273 seats in each train

New trains and infrastructure on track

     24th June 2016 A full-size mock-up of the Riyadh Metropolis train manufactured by rail transport company Alstom was unveiled earlier this month in Riyadh, in Saudi Arabia during a ceremony in the presence of the Riyadh governor Faisal bin Bandar bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, Transport Minister Suleiman Al Hamdan and... 

New US products showcased at Africa Rail

By: Victor Moolman     24th June 2016 New material testing equipment from US-based company MTS that can determine the strength and durability of rail infrastructure will be showcased at the Africa Rail 2016 conference and exhibition by laboratory equipment and services suppliers IMP Scientific & Precision. 

New US products showcased at Africa Rail
Photo by Duane Daws
WELD TEST Testing equipment provided by IMP test the strength of welds

Partnership to increase infrastructure growth

     24th June 2016 Three international firms consisting of the technology developer General Electric (GE) Africa, multi-industry company Mara Group and financial institution Atlas Merchant Capital have partnered to help address infrastructure challenges in Africa through investments in equity projects such as rail... 

Partnership to increase  infrastructure growth
Photo by Duane Daws
INFRASTRUCTURE DEVELOPMENTS The partnership hopes to improve infrastructure projects across Africa

Rail upgrade project largest in the world

By: Victor Moolman     24th June 2016 The new rolling stock procurement programme from the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (PRASA) is the largest passenger rail and system upgrade in the world, says professional service firm KPMG. 

Rail upgrade project largest  in the world
PRASA TRAINS The new trains that will work on the upgraded infrastructure system are larger and faster than previous trains

Summit brings governments, operators and investors together

     24th June 2016 Regional and international stakeholders for East and Central Africa's transport infrastructure sector will be gathering once again at the seventh East & Central Africa Roads & Rail Infrastructure Summit 2016 (Roads & Rail 2016) to be held on September 27 and 28 in Dar es Salaam, in Tanzania. 

Summit brings governments, operators and investors together
Photo by Reuters
ZIMBABWE RAIL Zimbabwean government authorities will be attending the summit to discuss the current state of the country’s railway system

Transport demand underestimated

By: Victor Moolman     24th June 2016 The number of passengers that could use rail transport has been grossly underestimated, says WSP Parsons|Brinckerhoff Africa (WSP) Transportation and Infrastructure divisional director Vishaal Lutchman. 

Transport demand underestimated
Photo by Duane Daws
RAIL SYSTEM Transnet is upgrading the freight rail infrastructure across South Africa

Consistent efficiency and safety improvements key for rail industry

By: Bruce Montiea     26th February 2016 To ensure a safer and more efficient rail network, railway engineering company Wictra Holdings says consistent improvements in materials and safety procedures are needed. 

Government rail network targets global recognition by 2019

By: Bruce Montiea     26th February 2016 The country’s rail infrastructure networks are set to receive significant boosts in investment, owing to government’s target of having the fifth-largest railway network in the world by 2019, says professional services firm WSP|Parsons Brinckerhoff. WSP|Parsons Brinkerhoff Africa infrastructure... 

Government rail network targets global recognition by 2019
PASSENGER RAIL IMPROVEMENTS There has been significant movement to improve and increase passenger rail capacity in South Africa owing to PRASA's rolling-stock upgrade projects

Rail maintenance designer preserves investment in SA

By: Bruce Montiea     26th February 2016 Despite challenges, such as uncertain future business prospects, in the South African rail industry, heavy on-track maintenance machinery designer and manufacturer Plasser South Africa maintains a constant investment programme. The programme includes maintaining a suitable number of heavy... 

SA company keeps abreast of pantograph technology

By: Bruce Montiea     26th February 2016 South Africa-based engineering company Pamodzi Unique Engineering has signed a technical agreement with international pantograph manufacturers to remain up to date with the latest pantograph technology. The company has been supplying State-owned heavy haul freight rail company Transnet Freight... 

Sustainable transport key to economy

By: Bruce Montiea     26th February 2016 A well-functioning economy starts with putting in place a good transport infrastructure before any other primary infrastructure development, says professional services firm KPMG global infrastructure major projects advisory head De Buys Scott. “The leverage potential of a well-developed and... 

Eskom coal line due for December 2017 completion 

By: Nadine James     11th December 2015 State-owned power utility Eskom’s Majuba rail project has had to deal with several challenges since it commenced in 2013. Subsequently, Eskom has revised the project’s completion date to December 2017, says Majuba rail project communications and stakeholder management head Khululiwe Xulu. The... 

Eskom coal line due for December 2017 completion
Photo by Duane Daws
MAJUBA POWER STATION Eskom's privater coal line will transport 21-million tonnes of coal to the Majuba power station

19 000 artisans to be trained as part of Gibela programme

     31st July 2015 State-owned passenger rail operator the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa’s (PRASA’s) R51-billion locomotive build programme, which is being carried out by black-empowered locomotive manufacturer Gibela Rail Consortium, will need about 1 375 skilled artisans to build the 600 trains and 3 600... 

19 000 artisans to be trained as part of Gibela programme
GIBELA MANUFACTURING FACILITY The R1-billion manufacturing facility in Dunnottar, Johannesburg, will have a dedicated training facility, which will train 19 000 artisans

Local manufacturer looks to tighten West African nation’s railways

By: David Oliveira     31st July 2015 Nuts and bolts loosening, tightening and torqueing solutions developer Slogging International’s Slogging Hammer is currently undergoing on-site trials at a railway project for a West African oil and gas exploration company. If these trials prove to be successful, about 6 000 units of the South... 

Local manufacturer looks to tighten West African  nation’s railways
OPERATOR SAFETY NO.1 The Slogging Hammer is significantly safer than the traditional method of using a wrench and sledgehammer to remove nuts and bolts

New production line designed for locomotive build programmes

By: David Oliveira     31st July 2015 South African cables manufacturer Aberdare Cables earlier this month launched its latest production line at its Pietermaritzburg manufacturing plant, in KwaZulu-Natal. The new line, supported by the Department of Trade and Industry’s (DTI’s) designation programme, was designed to produce cables... 

New production line  designed for locomotive build programmes
NEW PRODUCTION LINE Aberdares’ new production line employs a 120 mm, 24:1 length-to-diameter ratio extruder, manufacturing up to 140 m of cable a minute

South African locomotives specialist ventures further into Africa

By: Creamer Media Reporter      31st July 2015 Locomotive design and engineering company Grindrod Locomotives recently signed a contract worth more than $30-million with Bolloré Group, the first logistics and port operator in Africa with a presence in 46 countries, 250 subsidiaries and 25 000 employees.  The project will see a number of... 

South African locomotives specialist ventures further into Africa

Transnet announces record capital investment spend

By: David Oliveira     31st July 2015 State-owned rail company Transnet has increased its capital investment spend by 5.7% year-on-year, achieving a record R33.6-billion investment for the 2014/2015 financial year, the company announced at its financial year-end results earlier this month. A breakdown of Transnet’s capital... 

Transnet announces record capital investment spend
Photo by Duane Daws
BREAKING RECORDS Transnet spent a record R33.6-billion on capital investments, R14.5-billion of which was invested in new infrastructure and equipment

Transnet discusses new coal capacity

By: David Oliveira     31st July 2015 State-owned rail company Transnet would reach its goal of expanding the capacity of the Richards Bay corridor to 81-million tons a year in 2016, said Transnet GM commercial Divyesh Kalan at the second yearly Coal Transportation Africa Summit, which took place in Johannesburg in May. He noted that... 

Transnet discusses new coal capacity
Photo by Duane Daws
APPROACHING THE FINISHING LINE Transnet will reach its goal of expanding the capacity of the Richards Bay corridor to 81-million tons a year next year

Advisory network promotes shared infrastructure in Africa

By: Dylan Stewart     26th June 2015 To fast-track high-level private sector investment in Africa’s regional infrastructure, top global and African CEOs launched the Continental Business Network (CBN) – an exclusive infrastructure investment advisory platform for African heads of State – earlier this month, reports risk, social and... 

Africa’s rail industry assembles in Joburg

By: Dylan Stewart     26th June 2015 Remodelling public–private partnerships (PPPs), financing rail infrastructure and light rail as an alternative for passengers and intermodal networks for supply chain efficiency are a few of the topics that will be covered at the eighteenth yearly Africa Rail 2015 event, which will be held at... 

Clear strategy needed for rail upgrade plans

By: Dylan Stewart     26th June 2015 South Africa’s numerous rail upgrade plans are not guided by a coherent, high-level, overarching strategy, the lack of which may lead to poor implementation, advises engineering and professional services consulting firm WSP Group Africa regional director Vishaal Lutchman. 

Clear strategy needed for  rail upgrade plans
VISHAAL LUTCHMAN A clear vision will unify the motivations of different sectors

Local company hopes to be awarded Transnet tender  

By: Dylan Stewart     26th June 2015 Local partner and agent for Plasser & Theurer Track, maintenance equipment manufacturer Plasser South Africa (SA), has submitted a tender to provide State-owned rail utility Transnet with three flash butt rail-welding machines, Plasser SA spokesperson Tamsin Louw tells Engineering News. 

Local company hopes to be awarded Transnet tender
SPECIAL ABILITY The flash butt rail welder can perform a closure weld

Local engineering firm more than doubles y/y rail revenue

By: Dylan Stewart     26th June 2015 Niche technology engineering firm Ansys reported in May that it had increased its rail revenue from R37-million in 2014 to R94-million in 2015.  

Local engineering firm more than doubles  y/y rail revenue
Photo by Duane Daws
TEDDY DAKA Ansys has diversified its product offering into areas such as telecommunications and mining

Passenger fleet revamp a reason to celebrate, says consultancy

By: Dylan Stewart     26th June 2015 State-owned rail operator the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa’s (PRASA’s) rolling stock fleet renewal programme will provide a vital boost for South Africa’s economy and help establish a meaningful passenger railway industry in the country, says consultancy and auditing firm KPMG... 

Passenger fleet revamp a reason to celebrate, says consultancy
DE BUYS SCOTT Less than half of the existing fleet is operable
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