train in station

Atlanta transport authority to spend �73m on controls upgrade

The city transport authority in Atlanta, Georgia, is investing £73 million in automated train control and safety systems.

The project is expected to deliver considerable improvements in operational efficiency and overall productivity

Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority expects achieve greatly improved operational efficiency and overall productivity as a result of the project, while customers will also benefit from improved rail service delivery.

"This project is a demonstration of our commitment to move forward with the next generation of automated train control and safety systems," said MARTA general manager and CEO Dr Beverly A Scott. "It also positions MARTA to broaden its reach in terms of creating an integrated transit network for the future that will have the capacity to serve the entire Atlanta region."

Alstom will implement an integrated operational platform that will direct train movement, control traction power, and monitor station and other auxiliary functions.

The project, which will be funded from MARTA's capital budget, will take approximately five years to complete. It will dramatically improve MARTA's train control and supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) systems. Working in tandem, these systems will function as the nerve centre for MARTA's Rail Service Control Centre to safely direct train movements and deliver timely system and equipment field information.

For customers, the new train control and SCADA systems will improve on-time performance, enhance safety systems, provide real time information, and increase overall reliability.

Behind the scenes, the new technology will provide MARTA's rail team with more efficient operations, better communication between trains and stations, enhanced monitoring capabilities, shorter response times, and reduced maintenance costs.

MARTA's existing train control systems are more than 30 years old and, as a result, equipment has become increasingly cumbersome to use and obsolete hardware and software is no longer supported by vendors. In addition, the technology needed updating to allow for integration with new auxiliary systems.

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