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City-News Archive

Mexico City (Ciudad de Mexico) [MX] - Route closures and modernisation plans

J. Lehmann - 06.04.09

Mexico City – Mexico

The minister of transport (“Secretario de Transportes”) of Mexico City has set in motion a plan to continue the modernisation of the 405 strong trolleybus fleet. The plan includes rewiring and refurbishing the interior of the two hundred 1997 and 1998 supplied vehicles numbered from 9700 and 9800 upwards. They also receive a new green and white livery. The plan is to extend their life by a further 10 years. The vehicles were manufactured by Mitusbishe Mexico (MASA) In all 120 vehicles have been completed and the final 80 are to be completed by 2010.

Plans for 120 Trolleybuses to be in service on separated bus lanes with a 2 minute headway on the "Eje Central Lázaro Cárdenas" one of the main North/South corridors through the centre of the city. This high frequency Trolleybus service is designed to reduce the use of diesel buses on parallel routes. The current mobility plan for the City is dedicated to reducing the number of diesel buses in service on parallel routes within the city confines.

The remainder of the fleet will only be re-sprayed with the new livery. This will include the 150 Toshiba Trolleybuses purchased during the first half of the eighties despite the fact that the effective life expectancy will not be improved by much.

The purchase of new Trolleybuses is not planned as the operator, "Servicio de Transportes Eléctricos de D.F." (STE), has not been awarded any funding for such measures. There are, therefore, no low floor Trolleybuses in operation in Mexico City.

Due to the current shortage of serviceable Trolleybuses, which will increase dramatically with the introduction of the proposed 2 minute headway as mentioned above, the operator is proposing to reduce the number of Trolleybus routes from 15 to 10 in order to combat the lack of vehicles.

The plans for closure currently include the following routes and sections:
El Rosario to Chapultepec (route I),
Villa de Cortes to Coacalco (M),
Central de Abasto to Mixcoac (D/O),
Moctezuma to Unidad CTM Culhuacán (R1),
Moctezuma to Villa Coapa (R2).
The last two routes named are to be replaced along the "Tangente Eje 3 Oriente" by a new modern diesel bus network which is to go under the name of "Metrobus". Finance for this project, however, is not currently available.

Text: Dirk Budach

The following additional information was taken from Trolleybus magazine:

By the end of December 2008 the number of Trolleybuses repainted into the new green and white livery had reached at least 40 at Tetepilco depot, and an unknown number were reported to have been similarly treated at El Rosario depot. However, all such vehicles were being taken out of service upon repainting, apparently awaiting an official launch promoting the "green" credentials of the Trolleybus mode of transport. In late December, however, it was not known when such a launch might be. As a result, the number of Trolleybuses available for service has steadily declined since summer 2008.

This news item was taken, in part, from Trolleybus Magazine numbers 281 and 282, with the kind permission of the editor.

Trolleybus Magazine is a bi-monthly publication which reports about worldwide events and developments concerning Trolleybuses.and is available through " The National Trolleybus Association (NTA). Link:

Our photo shows number 9703, one of the last series that were purchased some 12 years ago.
Photo: Alexandr Zisser

Translation: Bankes

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