Sustainability and Localization in Rail Systems was Discussed at Road2Tunnel Fair

Sustainability and Localization in Rail Systems was the Topic at the RoadTunnel Fair
Sustainability and Localization in Rail Systems was Discussed at Road2Tunnel Fair

The Transcity Sustainable Transportation, Livable Cities Forum is also organized together with the Road2Tunnel – 5th International Highways, Bridges and Tunnels Specialization Fair organized in cooperation with İZFAŞ and ARK Fair Organization, hosted by İzmir Metropolitan Municipality. In the forum, the economic, environmental and social dimensions of sustainable urban transportation systems, one of the most important elements of development, are discussed.

In this context, the Rail Systems Forum was held on the first day. Izmir Metro A.S. “Sustainability and Indigenization in Rail Systems” was discussed under the moderation of General Manager Sönmez Alev. In the session, Izmir Metropolitan Municipality Finance Branch Manager Selin Sayın Kapancı, Metro Istanbul R&D Center Manager Nevzat Bayrak, Anatolian Rail Transportation Systems Cluster (ARUS) Coordinator Dr. İlhami Pektaş and Eskişehir Light Rail System Enterprise (ESTRAM) Vehicles Manager Erhan Sezgin took place as speakers. Sönmez Alev stated that they discussed the importance of sustainability and localization in rail systems from finance to infrastructure.

80 percent of transportation projects financing is for rail systems

İzmir Metropolitan Municipality Finance Branch Manager Selin Sayın Kapancı stated that 80 percent of transportation projects finances are for rail systems. Selin Mr. Kapancı, who gave information about the financing works carried out by the Izmir Metropolitan Municipality for transportation projects, said, “In 2050, the urbanization rate is expected to reach 70 percent. Municipalities play a major role in terms of both infrastructure and transportation. In the activity prioritization surveys conducted while the strategic plan is being prepared, we see that rail systems are at the top. We look for local credit for large-scale projects such as the metro, but unfortunately, long-term borrowing from local banks is not possible. That's why foreign loans are made. Unlike the private sector, we have to obtain permission for foreign borrowing. After obtaining the necessary permissions and approvals, interviews and applications are made with financial institutions. It usually takes one year to be finalized, but since they know the Izmir Metropolitan Municipality and we know what they want, this period is reduced to 5 months if the permits are obtained.”

Stating that they have signed foreign financing contracts worth 1 billion Euros within the scope of many projects such as maritime transportation, metro and tram, Kapanci said, “The Buca Metro project, which is mostly on our agenda, entered our account for the first time last month with 21,5 million Euros. Providing such important long-term financing under favorable conditions during the difficult process experienced in the world and in our country, the fact that we can reach without a treasury guarantee is an indicator of the trust in Izmir Metropolitan Municipality and the reputation gained on a global basis," he said, adding that they continue to work on new projects.

Rail systems carry the most passengers in Istanbul

Nevzat Bayrak, Director of Metro Istanbul R&D Center, stated that they are the only city in the world where the construction of 10 metros continues at the same time, and said, “The point where rail systems come from in a city is an indicator of development. It is very important for the economy and production for sustainability. When we look at the lines planned for 900 while there are 2029 vehicles at the moment, we are talking about a fleet of 4 thousand vehicles. Topics we have already started working on. Before anemia, we carry 2,5 million passengers, currently 2 million passengers daily, we have an annual target of 750 million passengers. Funicular, cable car, metro, tram, sea, bus; When we look at the transportation with Istanbul Card integration, the share of rail systems is 40 percent. Rail systems carry the most passengers," he said.

Energy unit price increased 2,5 times

Emphasizing that energy costs, which constitute the largest item in expenses, have increased unit prices by 2,5 times in a year, Nevzat Bayrak said, “From now on, we are heading towards a period where we will pay 3 times. We can't compete with prices, but we're seeing if there's any savings inside. We save millions of liras with the tens of projects we have developed for this purpose. As Metro Istanbul, we are in the first place not only in line length and vehicles, but also in many issues. Among the 36 cities that are members of the International Organization for Comparison of Metro Operations (COMET), Istanbul ranks first in the ranking of escalators per station with 14,25 escalators. We minimize our costs by developing different projects for their care. In addition, we are working on many issues such as the domestic signaling system and the improvement of existing systems. While doing all these, we also prioritize passenger satisfaction. In the satisfaction ranking, Istanbul ranks first among 36 cities.”

New generation tram production

Bayrak also gave information about the new generation tram design works and said, “There is a project that was done in the past, these vehicles are working on the T4 line. Vehicles produced by Metro Istanbul. We are reviving this project and we have started our production of 34 new generation vehicles. We are planning to put our domestic vehicles on the rails with the 2-year project. In addition to producing vehicles that will support Istanbul's transportation needs, it is also important to reveal the perspective of Metro Istanbul to be an international player in the field of rail transportation systems. In addition to saving resources by producing and using these vehicles ourselves, we also aim to generate income by exporting them. For this, we aim to be a company that can respond to international projects by combining our past product development experience and R&D culture with our technical and technological infrastructure.”

Annual export of 750 million dollars

Anatolian Rail Transportation Systems Cluster (ARUS) Coordinator Dr. İlhami Pektaş also talked about the point Turkey has reached in rail systems and vehicle production. Pektaş stated that ARUS is Turkey's leading cluster in the railway sector with 26 companies from 180 provinces, 30 supporting organizations, more than 30 thousand employees and national brands opening up to the world. Dr. Pektaş said, “The 51 percent domestic contribution requirement for the purchase of vehicles used in rail systems came out in 2012 and became a milestone. The domestic contribution requirement has started to be applied in all tenders. In this way, 3 thousand 461 rail system vehicles were tendered. A vehicle that was previously bought for 3 million Euros has now dropped to 1,5 million, and it is falling even more. 50% savings were achieved by using local products and brands. While always importing, we are now exporting 25 million dollars to 750 countries with our domestic companies, including infrastructures. Products of our domestic and national brands such as trams, train sets and wagons have been exported both on rails in different cities of our country and to countries such as Romania, Poland and Thailand. Construction infrastructure companies are making infrastructures for rail systems all over the world, including countries such as Qatar, Senegal, Saudi Arabia, India, Poland and Ukraine. Together with the infrastructure, the planned purchase price until 2035 is 70 billion Euros. All of these needs should be met by domestic production,” he said.

Eskişehir Light Rail System Enterprise (ESTRAM) Vehicles Manager Erhan Sezgin stated that the development of rail systems has played an important role in urban life from history to the present and explained the sustainability models in rail systems.

Günceleme: 17/09/2022 13:09

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