ISRAEL Railways (IR) has launched a tender valued at NIS1.5 billion, for its first electric locomotives, which will operate in push-pull mode with the existing fleets of Siemens single-deck coaches and Bombardier double-deck sets at up to 160km/h.
IR expects the first batch of locomotives to be delivered by the fourth quarter of 2016, while the first electric motor units (emus) are due to arrive in early 2017.
The tender states that the procurement of "off-the-shelf" designs is a key priority and IR seeks vehicles which have been tested and accepted to UIC and EN standards.
Electrification is Israel Railways' most important infrastructure project of the coming decade, involving 420 kilometers of existing and new track. In addition, Israel Railways' two biggest projects the high-speed Tel Aviv-Jerusalem line ( line A1 ), and the Acre-Carmiel line will both be electrified. The two projects' estimated cost is NIS 11 billion, including electrification of the tracks, rolling stock and electric locomotives, and training of crews.