Tramway test runs concluded with speed tests – testing succeeded as expected

Tramway test runs concluded with speed tests – testing succeeded as expected

The third and – for the time being – last week of test runs on Tampere Tramway demonstrated the functionality of the track infrastructure and technical tramline systems also at maximum speeds. Speed tests were performed during week 14 on Insinöörinkatu (40 km/h) and Hervannan valtaväylä (70 km/h). The other required verifications were also completed during the tests and, all in all, the test runs exceeded expectations. Additional individual tests will be performed in April, so it’s a good idea to be especially alert in traffic and familiarise yourself with, for example, how the traffic lights on the tramline operate.


The third test week involved driving the maximum permitted speeds on the street and track section on Insinöörinkatu and Hervannan valtaväylä as well as testing the functioning of traffic lights on these sections. The interlocking device in the depot area was also tested. All of the test run phases involved checking other technical tramline systems, functioning of the electrified line and superstructure driveability.

– The third test run week went just as well as the two previous ones. We were able to complete the speed tests as uninterrupted runs, which was possible because traffic controllers were involved to safeguard the car’s movement among other traffic. All in all, the tests were even more successful than we expected. A diverse range of tests allows us to ensure smooth tram operation in the future, says Niina Uolamo, who is the Test Run Coordinator at Tampere Tramway Ltd.

A key focus of the test runs during all three weeks was the driveability of the superstructure and functionality of the turnouts.

– With regard to the superstructure, which means slab track on the street sections and ballasted track on Hervannan valtaväylä, we studied the car’s behaviour at different speeds and verified that the turnouts function as planned. In this respect, the tests revealed no significant problems, states Timo Kuusela from the Tramway Alliance, who is responsible for superstructure technology.

Testing of the electrified line focused on evaluating operation of the tram car pantograph in relation to the overhead contact line and monitoring power supply.

– The results for the overhead contact lines were expected. We observed some minor needs for adjustment, but otherwise the car and electrified track have worked together as they should, sums up Worksite Manager Ari Valaja from the Tramway Alliance, who was responsible for installation of the overhead contact lines.

Additional individual test runs in April – stay alert in traffic


Now that the track infrastructure on the first test run section between the depot and Turtola has been verified as functional, the test car can, if necessary, operate independently on the track according to the traffic rules.

– In the future, the tram will move in Hervanta without traffic controllers, so other people should make sure they understand the traffic lights associated with the tram, notes Niina Uolamo.

The tests revealed that some further technical adjustment of the tram car lights is still needed, and fine-tuning will be performed using Tampere’s own car. While the correct settings are being tested, the lights may also be triggered by car traffic. The City of Tampere is responsible for maintenance of the tram car lights, and testing will be carried out in cooperation. A number of individual test runs will be performed in April with the test car. Some of these will be take place at night and will be announced separately. An intense period of test runs similar to the situation during the past few weeks is not planned at this time.

– We may still use the test car in the future on other test run sections. However, we haven’t made any detailed plans concerning the testing programme for the test car or the prototype tram car

Niina Uolamo and the Tramway Alliance’s Petra Brunnila, who is responsible for commissioning, are very satisfied with the overall success of the test runs.

– All parties did their very best to make the tests a success. These few weeks have turned us into a close-knit team that works really well together. Each person has offered help when needed even through everyone has their own area of responsibility and special competence with regard to the tests, explain Niina Uolamo and Petra Brunnila with gratitude.

Watch a video showing the operating principle of the tram car lights (in Finnish):



The effects of the coronavirus situation are being monitored in construction and commissioning


It’s difficult to predict the effects that the exceptional situation caused by coronavirus will have on progress in the Tampere Tramway project.  Tampere Tramway Ltd and the Tramway Alliance are monitoring development of the situation carefully, and the project is moving forward accordingly.

– Completing the test runs under these conditions was a great achievement and the team deserves a lot of praise. We are also pleased about all the positive feedback that we’ve received. We’re taking the coronavirus issue seriously, and we can react quickly when necessary. The safety and health of the personnel and the various project stakeholders is of utmost importance in all conditions, emphasises CEO Pekka Sirviö from Tampere Tramway Ltd.

Tampere Tramway Ltd and the Tramway Alliance will continue to provide up-to-date information in social media and on their websites regarding the progress of the project.

– It’s wonderful to see how people are actively following our channels, especially at this time. These channels provide the latest information about construction and commissioning of the tramway, explains Sirviö.

Further information:

Read the Tampere Tramway traffic safety material and learn more about traffic light operation at

Pekka Sirviö
CEO, Tampere Tramway Ltd
Tel. +358 (0)40 334 5798
pekka.sirvio (at)

Niina Uolamo
Test Run Coordinator
Project Engineer, Tampere Tramway Ltd
Tel. +358 (0)40 556 4064
niina.uolamo (at)

Read also:

Tampere Tramway’s test car will begin operating in Hervanta in mid-March – Now it’s time to review the traffic rules