Hitachi Rail Italy unveiled the first rail vehicles for Miami-Dade County.
The October 24, 2016 ceremony took place at the Hitachi Rail Italy factory in Medley, Fla., and saw the unveiling of the first two cars of train number 1 (out of 68 trains in total) that the train maker is manufacturing for the City in Florida.
The Miami-Dade Metro contract amounts to about $300 million dollars representing a total quantity of 68 trains (136 cars). Each vehicle is 45.8 m long, 3.11 m wide and can reach a max speed of 75 km/h. The carbody structure is stainless steel, while the interior fittings are light alloy with integrated lighting and solutions of modular assembly.
“The award of this contract marked the return of Hitachi Rail Italy to the United States after about ten years of absence from the heavy rail market,” said Maurizio Manfellotto, CEO of Hitachi Rail Italy.
The first married pair of Metrorail cars are ready to begin testing, according to the Miami-Dade Department of Transportation and Public Works.
Assembly of the new rail cars, which will replace the current fleet began shortly after the new 140,000-square-foot Hitachi Rail facility opened in March.
These first two new rail cars will undergo a rigorous testing phase that will last approximately eight to nine months. Some aspects of the factory testing include: continuity testing to make sure the wiring is correct; compatibility testing in order to determine if the two cars correctly communicate with each other; high voltage testing to ensure all the wiring is shielded properly; and weight distribution testing to make sure the cars are balanced properly.
Once they are fully operational, the two rail cars will be placed into service. The Department anticipates to have the full fleet of new rail cars (136 total) assembled, tested, and placed into service by the end of 2019.
Aside from the modern exterior, these new trains will include features for riders, such as: Free WiFi, interior bicycle racks, digital displays with media content, a high-quality audio system for announcements, digital signs that will display the name of the next station, and high-efficiency air conditioning units.