Working on the photos I took during a recent visit to Katowice (and much of the rest of the network) I noticed that it is difficult to find a list of all the modernised cars currently operating there. So I made my own (originally to appear in the German language Blickpunkt Straßenbahn magazine – but as so often the space available there is rather limited): corrections/amendments always welcome!
The first new PESA “Swing” 122NaL vehicles are now in service on line 10. Bartosz Stępień has kindly sent us a few images:
Olechów during the “premiere ride” (23.12.2015)
More vehicles will be delivered soon (22 in total have been ordered). 1578-1581 have arrived so far and the first 3 are in service.
On December 6 MPK Olsztyn opened its doors to the public to show the new Kołobrzeska tramway depot (which is incorporated into the existing bus depot, though the tram entrance is in Towarowa) and the new trams. Two trams offered public rides from depot to the junction at the railway station (but not letting people on or off away from the depot). Thousands crammed onto the trams. The depot is quite a way away from the station and this event offered a rare chance to ride trams on these non-revenue tracks in Dworcowa and Towarowa streets and also take photos.
Dworcowa street (Bahnhofstraße)
PKP railway station stop (in plac Konstytucji 3 Maja) and adjacent terminus (Lubelska)
The original system (opened in 1907) closed in 1965. There was also a trolleybus network from 1939 to 1971. There is a nice map on sharemap.org showing both the new tram network and the old lines.
Lodz is one of my favorite travel destination these days. The “Helmut” cars (this is the local nickname for all ex West German cars that went to Poland) are of special interest to me. Unfortunately, the wounding-down of the Lodz interurban tram companies MKT and TP in 2012 resulted in the scrapping of a number of these second hand mostly Duewag built cars. Fortunately, some remain (not all in service and MPK scrapped a few recently) and here is an overview (this post originally appeared in late 2014 and has been brought up-to-date):
The cars are listed as follows (by fleet number carried):
original operator (successive operators in brackets)
builder & date built (series)
All cars (except the ex Bielefeld M8C(N)s and works car 92002) are currently stationed at Telefoniczna (no. 1 – this number was taken over from the old Tramwajowa depot which was closed and now acts as the main workshops but is scheduled to be replaced by a new facility) tram depot and many carry a 1xxx number. The first digit of the fleet number in Lodz always donates the depot. Most of the cars taken over by MPK from MKT and TP clash with already existing Konstal cars of the same number and thus the leading digit is omitted there. The M8C cars at Chocianowice (no. 2 – originally no. 3 but re-numbered when Dabrowskiego depot closed a few years ago) also do not have the depot number as the first digit of the fleet number. All the M8C cars will be rebuilt with a low-floor centre section soon (MPK has started with the first car in 2014 – there is even talk about rebuilding the M6S cars accordingly later) and the “new” M8CN cars get a new number. Workscars have a 5 digit number and the first digit donates the depot (not all cars are numbered correctly – this unfortunately seems to be long-standing tradition in Lodz!) followed by a 2xxx number; 92xxx donates cars allocated to Tramwajowa workshops or the permanent way/workscar depot which is almost opposite of the now demolished Dabrowskiego depot). So whenever a tram is moved (allocated) from one depot to another only the first digit of the fleet number changes (this has been done a lot with the remaining Konstal cars).
Bielefeld GT6 #243 later Bielefeld GT8 #843 later Bielefeld GT8 #813 (Innsbruck GT6 #40, MKT GT6 #40)
sold to scrap man by MKT but swapped with accident victim 1075′ and thus re-activated
2015 has seen movies being shot in Lodz involving some of the historic trams. Paweł Kaźmierczak took these photos and also was the motorman. Here is just a small selection:
And they also made a music video:
On October 31st the important East-West route was re-opened after two years of complete rebuilding. In the East the line was also extended (to Olechow). MPK celebrated this event with a display of some trams (including many of the historic fleet) on the Friday (30th) and free rides on Saturday/Sunday (without any historic trams). During the first days there were various problems mainly with pantographs getting wrecked by the new overhead wires but also with the power supply. A big feature of the line is a grand new central interchange near Piotrkowska with a very colourful roof. Line 10 runs along the whole length of the W-Z route. All lines going south now use new track in Piotrkowska (this short stretch had been abandoned in the 1950s) with the old way via Zwirki (avoiding the new hub) being kept for emergencies.
Konstal #2339 has just wrecked its pantograph entering the central interchange and runs into the station using the pantograph of the second car:
Paweł Kaźmierczak took the following images on the Friday:
At the end of April 2013 the tram club KMST (Klub Miłośników Starych Tramwajów) moved the historic cars from the closed ex MKT depot at Helenowek to the ex TP depot at Brus. Brus is now owned by the city of Lodz and there are hopes to re-open Brus as a proper transport museum in the future. Brus is now open the public on certain open days during the year.
The following cars (listed by type) are now housed at Brus:
not part of the active museum fleet is this tram that was overhauled at Telefoniczna and later Brus but is now on display in Konstantynow Lodzkie
2N2 282 (City of Konstantynow owned) ex MPK72012 ex MPK2012 ex MPK282
This original posting from 2012 has been updated with a current fleet list (June 2014) only:
Much has happened in Lodz in 2012. We now only have one operator (MPK) and much of the interurban rolling stock has been scrapped. MPK absorbed parts of the MKT and TP fleets (those vehicles not taken over were scrapped or are still in the process of being scrapped – no workscars were taken over but so far all of them survive at Brus and Helenowek depots).
Here you will find the fleet list.
What we have not yet included are the passenger tram carbodies owned by the tram club which still are stored in the open at Helenowek depot. MPK also uses some ex 1950/60s Konstal chassis to transport modern bogies (no details known). Also a couple of ancient 4-wheel freight cars survive at Brus, Helenowek and Chocianowice depots plus a 8-wheel flat waggon at Chocianowice (no fleet numbers known). It is hoped that most if not all will eventually move to the new Brus transport museum which is supposed to be set-up later this year. As we write this Brus depot is closed and almost empty (except for 2 workscars and some equipment owned by the tram club). At Helenowek the scrapping of cars continues. We hear that MPK will now not take over Helenowek depot (which is owned by Lodz city)! Tram club owned no.2 (ex TP) is currently at Helenowek plus some privately owned cars (see list). No. 2 is supposed to move to Chocianowice depot next but eventually will go to the transport museum in Brus. Some of the ex German cars at Telefoniczna are now stored on the grass (i.e. off the track) because of acute shortage of space.
Fleet numbers explained:
The regular fleet has always been issued with a 3 digit car number (e.g. 001-999). In 1985 (except for the historic cars and the ex MKT cars where the lease has been taken over = ex Mannheim and ex BOGESTRA cars) a fourth digit was added to the front of the number denoting the depot:
1 = originally Tramwajowa (until 1986 or 87), now Telefoniczna
2 = originally Dąbrowskiego (until 2011), now Chocianowice
3 = previously used for Chocianowice
4 = Brus (no. dropped when taken over by TP)
5 = Helenowek (no. dropped when taken over by MKT)
6 = Telefoniczna (1986-87 only)
To make things more complicated, most workscars were renumbered (in the 1970s) into the 2000 series (but allocated to any depot) and these cars later (in the 1980s) received another prefix:
1-3 = depots as above
7 = training cars (prefix no longer in use for them today), also some workscars at Tramwajowa carried this prefix
9 = general workscar prefix (permanent way division “Zakład Torów i Sieci” – but cars can be found at all depots and not just the ZTiS yard opposite old Dąbrowskiego depot).
So far we have not seen if the following cars have been renumbered:
32036, 32102, 32106 and 72012.
805N/Na modernisation explained:
On Wikipedia you find various articles (some only in Polish) that deal with the different versions of these Konstal trams. The original cars (this includes the standard gauge 105N/Na cars) were technically very similar to the Warsaw 13N type which itself was more-or-less a blatant copy of a CKD Tatra T1 car (Warsaw had bought two of those). The T1 is of course based on an American classic: the PCC car. So many of the 105/805 cars still around in Poland today with their original foot controls are really PCC cars. Some cars have been rebuilt with more modern control equipment and starting in 2004 many (let’s concentrate on the 805s here) trams were thoroughly modernised. MPK Lodz has done a lot of their cars and they also did modernisations for other systems: Gdansk, Silesia and Torun. Here is a list of the 805Na ND cars rebuilt in Lodz (only the MPK Lodz fleet is mentioned). Note that during 2005 they left out the cabs in the second trams of the sets (without a cab they are called 805NaD/2). Four sets received different control equipment and are called 805N-Enika (the last two sets now feature a new door layout in the middle giving more space on board: one double door instead of two double doors). It has to be mentioned that MPK Lodz does not (or at least not always) modernise the trams in the original order. A tram going in for modernisation usually comes out bearing a different fleet number! We are not aware of any official re-numbering lists. Sometimes motormen go out in the yard to pick up their tram for the day and they find two sets with the same numbers (the original set and a modernised set bearing the same fleet numbers – the old set will of course soon depart for the Tramwajowa works)…
There are also the following cars in the fleet today with different control equipment in the fleet (one could call them “sort of modernised” – only the bodywork has not been updated):
805N-ML 264+5, 266+7, 620+1, 936+7
805N Elin 335+6, 368+9, 908+9, 914+5, 916+7, 930+1, 932+3, 934+5, 938+9
We are still working on a list of the surviving non-modernised cars.
On May 17th we chartered ex Bielefeld M8C #526 from MPK to go on the outer ends of interurban lines 41, ex 43bis (now 9) and 45 (now 16). The day started very wet but the time we reached Konstantynow the sun came out. Here are some images taken during the trip:
43bis – Konstantynow
In this article we are presenting a current overview of the lodz workscar fleet. On overview (with more details) can also be found in our current fleet list (updated for January 2014) which can be downloaded here – this list includes the whole fleet, not just the workscars.
The cars are shown here in numerical order using their original 2XXX MPK workscars numbers
fleet number (operator), owner
103 (TP) City of Lodz originaly 2001