Monday, October 22, 2012

First MBTA LRV arrives for re-build

Type-7 #3660
at the Riverside car house.
Last June, Scott Page, a Boston to a T Guest Contributor, reported that the MBTA had approved the overhaul of 86 Green Line Type-7 Light Rail Vehicles (LRVs). The vehicles are set to be overhauled by Alstom Transportation which has a facility in Hornell, New York.

Four months later, the overhaul program is finally starting to move forward.

Two weeks ago, the first of the 86 cars (LRV #3614) left the MBTA's Riverside yard on a flatbed trailer and headed up to Alstom. This first car, the "pilot car" will take a little over a year to overhaul. Pilot cars usually take the longest to overhaul due to fact that it is the first time the contractors are working on the equipment. If the contract continues on its original schedule, the pilot car should be returning to Boston by November 7th of next year. If all goes well with the pilot car, sets of cars will then be sent up to Alstom on a rotating basis.

The 86 Type-7 LRV's that are being overhauled were built by the Kinki-Sharyo company of Japan between 1986-87. They have been the true powerhouse's behind the Green Line for the past 25 years. They have averaged almost 1 Million in-service miles since they began running on the rails in Boston.

The vehicles are now showing significant signs of age however. Although these vehicles are still more reliable than their Type-8 counterparts it is time for them to get some significant upgrades.

Here is a breakdown of what kind of work will be done to the vehicles during their overhaul.

Work Done
Full replacement with upgraded design
HVAC system, Low Voltage Power Supply, Aux. Lighting, Cab Equipment, & Door Indicators  
Replacement - in-kind
Flooring, Seating, Vehicle Insulation
Vehicle Structure, Roof, Exterior Skin, Door Systems, Braking Equipment, Trucks, Propulsion, Pantograph, and Interior. 

Body damage on a Green Line Type-7 LRV
All 86 cars will come back to Boston with a brand new paint job similar to the "Olive Green" color that the T has been painting some of the LRV's in recent years.

The re-build is said to last until 2015 but some cars should be back in active service by early 2014.

This overhaul is part of a $104 Million contract that the T has with Alstom. The project is said to create around 200 new jobs for the company. Alstom will also soon be starting the overhaul of the MBTA's 74 Kawasaki bi-level coaches. No timeline has been set up for that project yet.


  1. Where did you hear about the olive green paint job? It's strange since they've been repainting the Type 6s in the nicer looking older style more recently.

    1. I mean Type 7s. Also, your captcha is incredibly hard..

    2. The MBTA considers the older style paint job on the type-7's to be Olive green.

    3. It's really "GREEN" at least . . . not that wimpy "Teal"!


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