03 March 2009

Kumamoto Streetcars

Streetcar Catalog Photographs of the streetcars in Kumamoto city, Japan. I happened upon this blog with hundreds of photos of the "trams" in this Japanese city. Interesting because he notes the manufacture date of each model car, showing cars made in every decade over the past 50 years, all still operating together on the same system.

Here, a 1950s era car and a 1990s era car pass on the street: 


Randy Simes said...

50 years old...and just to think, most cars start to really act up once they get around 10 years of age.

CityKin said...

I think the oldest one he photographed was built 1951, so 58 years. But they are also from every decade since, and working on the same lines.

John Schneider said...

How many 58 year-old buses area still rolling around somewhere?

There are 70 year-old streetcars still in service in SF, Philadelphia, New Orleans and Kenosha.

DP said...

I'd be interested to see a life-cycle cost comparison between bus and streetcar vehicles. With new vehicles costing $300K vs. $3.3M, respectively, I'm guessing it makes more sense to rebuild a streetcar than buy a new one. The really interesting math, though, would be the life-cycle cost on a per passenger mile basis, which obviously would vary by location, but would very likely swing in favor of the streetcar.

(I'm pretty certain the streetcar vs. auto life-cycle cost comparison isn't even close.)