This afternoon, the first renovated subway train went into operation on Budapest’s M3 metro line, according to Hungarian wire service MTI.
The renovations are an extremely necessary move, as the condition of the decades-old trains has deteriorated significantly over time, with numerous incidents of subway cars stalling or even catching on fire.
Budapest’s M3, the “blue” subway line, was opened to the public in 1976. The line reached its current length of 17.3km in 1990. This is the busiest metro line, with half a million passengers daily in the capital. The line connects the northern and southern parts of the city, and is also the metro line that runs closest to Budapest’s Ferenc Liszt International Airport.
Speaking at the first refurbished train’s official opening ceremony, Budapest Mayor István Tarlós said emphasized that the renovation of the M3 line is one of the most important tasks facing the Hungarian capital.
Tarlós added that every month two new trains will enter service; if everything goes according to plan, by summer of 2018 the M3 line will only have refurbished trains running on it. He also said that the refurbishment of subway cars is not the only part of renovations to the M3 line, that these will continue this year.
After his talk, Mayor Tarlós received a model of the refurbished train from Metrovagonmash head Boris Bogatiryev, who said that that his company has sent 300 train cars to Budapest since the 1970s. He also expressed his joy that the renovation work was undertaken by Metrovagonmash.
The refurbishment work has been carried out by Metrovagonmash, part of the Moscow-based railway machine-building group Transmashholding (Трансмашхолдинг). The Russian company, which also made the first M3 metro cars in the 1970s, started the upgrading of 37 trains (222 cars) for the Budapest subway system last year.
The design of the metro cars remains old-fashioned and retro, with the change of white replacing the old blue. However, the metro cars’ power consumption has been massively reduced, modern aesthetic styles have been added inside, and both the passenger comfort level and working environment for drivers have been improved. The lifespan of the metros will be extended by 25 years. The total cost of this investment totals 220 million euros.
You can see more photos of the freshly renovated train cars below:
Via MTI and Magyar Nemzet
Images via MTI