Rivium GRT Application

The initial decision to implement the ParkShuttle transportation system between subway station Kralingse Zoom and business park Rivium (city of Capelle aan den IJssel) was taken in 1995. The goal of the pilot was to proof that at the same expense, a better service and higher frequency could be achieved – making (public) transportation a more attractive alternative for car drivers.

From February 1999 to November 2001, three ParkShuttle vehicles operated on the 1300-meter single lane trajectory. Bi-directional travel was enabled by means of three passing locations. An interstate is intersected by means of a tunnel, while a highway is crossed by a specially constructed (single lane) bridge. A journey lasted approximately 4 minutes.

The anticipatated required capacity was exceeded because of expansions of the business park. At the same time the capacity was restricted by the number and size of the vehicles in combination with the single infrastructure. The succes of the system prompted the decision in December 2001 to upgrade the system from its’ pilot status.

In phase II, the trajectory has been extended and the number of stations increased to 5. The 1800-meter track has three stops within business park Rivium. A new stop has been created to service business park Brainpark III and the residential suburb Fascinatio. The dedicated infrastructure, installed at grade, is now dual lane (with exception of the forementioned tunnel and bridge). Several at grade crossings with pedestrian and car traffic are realized.

The number of vehicles (6) and the capacity of the vehicles (20 passengers) doubled. The quality was also improved by applying state-of-the-art automotive know-how and technology. The vehicles are (even) more reliable, comfortable, silent and faster.

During peak-hours all vehicles are operational, on-schedule, based on a 2.5 minute interval. The scheduled service ensures the capacity is optimally used, while the on-demand operations in off-peak hours ensure the passenger service is maximized.

The business park Rivium case is a good example of the succes of Group Rapid Transit applications. The passenger acceptance of the system is great and the experience with the operations of the system have been invaluable, adding to the existing knowledge and being better able to provide insight into the operations to potential customers.

Business Park Rivium Application summarized:

Description: Public Transportation to business park
Operational period: Phase I: February 1999 – November 2001
Phase II: December 2005
Patronage: 3.500 passengers (daily)
Peak Capacity: 500 p/ph/pd
Service Frequency: 2.5 minutes (peak hours)
On-demand (off-peak hours)
Times of Operation: 12hrs. p/d, 5 days p/w
Configuration: Line-connection
Operations: On-schedule / on-demand
Connections: Ride sharing, Multiple Origins to Multiple Destinations
Type of vehicle: 2nd generation ParkShuttle
Number of Vehicles: 6
Passengers seated/standing: 12 / 10+
Drive: Electric
Supervisory Control System: Transit Operations Monitoring and Supervision (TOMS)
Track Length: 1800 meters
Number of Stations: 8, on-line
Berths per station: 4 stations with 2 berths, 4 single berth stations
Crossings for Traffic/Pedestrians: 6 (3 at grade) / 5 (all at-grade)

12 Responses to “Rivium GRT Application”

  1. No drivers needed.So: how many people are needed to keep the system running? Technicians, supervisors and maintenance? Probably this system pays itself back within a short time.And I guess the more expanded the system gets, the better the ratio personal/service will get!

    Is it going to be built somewhere else?

    • The number of staff in the maintenance team greatly depends on the size of the system and the days and hours of operation per week. The system is set up such that the operational effort required is minimized.

      At the Rivium application in Rotterdam, the system operates from 06.00 until 21.00 on weekdays only. During each shift only one operator is present to monitor the operations of the 6 vehicles. Additionaly there is one supervisor present during the day who performs visual inspections and small maintenance. The staff consists of 4 people in total (the 4th resource being required to cover sick-leave, holidays and other eventualities).

      At the Masdar application the system is operational 7 days a week, 18 hours per day. The staff from year 1 to year 2 has been reduced from 10 people to 8 people as this was proven possible in the operations in the first year. At any time there will be two people present at the facility to ensure that if any disturbances occur these can be properly addressed.

  2. Looks to me like 2getthere should be front of the line to convince Morgantown to replace their current fleeet.

    Could use the existing infrastructure with these vehicles and expand the network without having to provide electrified guideway.

    • Replacement and/or extension of the Morgantown system with the ParkShuttle is certainly possible. The dimensions and characteristics are alike. We have been studying this possibility, not having completed the analysis and the costs at this time though.

      • Could these applications be modified to drive in ice/snow? Also do they have a/c and heaters for the passengers? I am researching a method of transportation for students to get around campus in a region such as Finland.

        • 2getthere’s systems are based on rubber tires, which means that in snow and ice similar precautions as with automobiles should be taken. Other tires would already alleviate part of the issues, while other measures could also include adaptation of the infrastructure construction to the conditions. The most advanced solution is the road energy system of our partner Unihorn, which stores energy during summer to use it for heating of the guideway during winter – whether this is applicable and suitable needs to be determined for each specific project.

          All vehicles can feature a/c and heating. The ParkShuttle at Rivium doesn’t feature a/c as it was determined not to be required, but does have heating featured in the vehicle.

          We will gladly support and advise you on the suitability of our system(s) for you specific application. Please contact us through e-mail to discuss the options.

  3. What is the speed of these vehicles?

    • The vehicles at Rivium business park have a technical maximum speed of 40km per hour. As a result of the lay-out and the crossings, the maximum speed that is realized during the journey is actually 32km per hour.

  4. Is the Parkshuttle in Netherlands still running?Have read articles that it commenced operations in 2006 and based on records, was still operational in 2009. Is it still operational now?

    • Yes, the system is still operational. A new concession agreement has been signed at the end of 2011, ensuring that the concession is extended to at least the end of 2016. The system is operational on weekdays (as it relates to the business park) from 06.00 until 21.00hrs at night.

  5. Can this GRT system be put in place or used as a PRT system with the same vehicles?
    Also, why does this only do 19 mph or 32 KmH besides for the track not being strait?

    • The GRT and PRT vehicles operate according to the same guidance principle, using the Free Ranging On Grid navigation technology. As such the vehicles can use the same infrastructure, or alternatively be used intermixed in the same application. In this regard it is possible to replace the PRT vehicles with GRT vehicles.

      However, the GRT vehicles are considerably wider in comparison to the PRT vehicles (2.1 vs. 1.4 meters respectively). Which means that if the existing track is sized only for PRT vehicles, the track wil need to be widened to accommodate the wider GRT vehicles.

      The maximum speed of 2getthere’s systems is limited to 40km/ph (25mph). This is not a technical limitation as the technology is also applied for systems operating up to 80km/ph. The limitation comes forth from regulations and certification guidelines. As 2getthere’s systems are used as feeders to existing public transportation, the systems typically only cover relatively small distances. As such there is no requirement to run at a higher speed.

      At Rivium there are a couple of stops and at-grade intersections. Because of the spacing and the locations of these, we are only able to achieve a higher speed on a relatively short section of the route. When Rivium was realized the maximum speed defined was 32km/ph as sufficient for the application. A higher speed would also mean a higher energy use and decrease the range of the vehicle possible on a single charge.

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