Sofia [BG] - New Trams and Trolleybuses Ordered
K. Budach - 29.07.13
In June a contract was signed with Skoda Electric Plzen for the delivery of 20 new low-floor trams and 50 articulated trolleybuses. The 50 trolleybuses are type 27Tr with Solaris bodies and will be delivered over the next 22 months.
The contract value for trolleybuses is CZK 700 million (= EUR 26.9 million). EU funds are available for the purchase. The tender had to be repeated following appeals from the unsuccessful bidders; Skoda / Solaris was successful in first tender last year also with the 27Tr model.
Apart from 30 Skoda/Solaris 26Tr delivered in 2010/11, mainly old high-floor trolleybuses are used on the Sofia trolleybus system. The total fleet is currently almost 140 vehicles, of which 100 units are of type Ikarus/Ganz 280.92, which were delivered at the end of the 80s.
Eleven units from this batch were rebuilt between 2007 and 2010, they received a new front and rear and a new yellow livery with light blue edging. These conversions resumed from the end of 2012. Trolleybus 2602 from 1988 was the first to get a new look, and two more articulated trolley buses (2617 and 2911) followed by July 2013. Thirteen rebuilt vehicles now operate, as one trolleybus, 2924, had to be scrapped after a fire in April 2011.
Translation: Martin Wright
Photo: The non-reconditioned Ikarus articulated trolleybuses still bear their blue livery, this is no. 1217 running on route 5
Photographer : Wilfried Wolf, 23.04.2007
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