But Mal there's only one tram in that photo! It's when you see a row of them ....
The Flexitys and the Citadis are identical in capacity to the Melbourne Es as c30 metre trams. The Flexity (which is basically an E platform with 2 less doors) is limited in its practical capacity by having too few doors (you noted how long it took to load), but the Citadis has effectively as many doors as the E (4 double-leafs and 2 single-leafs = equivalent of 5 double-leaf doors, but better distributed than on the E because of the singles at the ends of the car, making 6 doors in total). The Citadis should perform very well indeed in terms of passenger exchange and load distribution, as long as the aisle is wide enough.
I've actually been to Adelaide a few times but not for a while. However I can analyse how a PT system performs without just seeing if there is daylight visible through the windows! Statistics are a significant factor in this, as well as timetable analysis etc. After the general Adelaide system closed, the Glenelg line patronage stabilised at about 3 million a year from the 1960s (pretty tiny if you look at some of the Melbourne route figures, really just a bus figure), slipping down below 2 million a year in the 1990s. I believe there was a general collapse of patronage in Adelaide around that time (except for the O Bahn which continued to thrive and grow) when PT services were privatised.
The tram picked up a bit in the late 2000s when the new trams were purchased and the line extended through the CBD. For a while it was having an encouraging 10% pa patronage growth, but this suddenly leveled off at around 3 million around 2010, indicating that the line had tapped the catchment limit (those who would leave their cars behind at least). Since then it has slipped down somewhat. The time when patronage has boomed was after 2010 when the extension to the Entertainment Centre, the park and ride and the free city section were set up. Patronage on the line has shot up by 3 to 4 times - but the increase is not revenue patronage, meaning it's patronage of the city circulator section, not the Glenelg line which accounts for only about 1/4 to 1/3 of the patronage.
My feeling, as I've said, is that the Glenelg line is a relatively stagnant performer, not fully tapping into the big development at the western end of the Anzac Highway just a couple of blocks away, where people are making use of the faster bus. I think the line needs to be rejigged to tap into this and take over the role of the bus a bit more proactively, as well as putting serious effort into hauling ass in order to attract more people. Those loads of people on trams 5 to 10 mins apart may look impressive, but statistically they're no more than that of a middling busy bus route.
---InTramsDownUnder@..., <mal.rowe@...> wrote : I'm with you Alex.
There's a limit to what one can know about a city from internet searches and Google satellite views!
Here's my pic looking South down King William St last Thursday in the evening peak.
104 sat at Rundle St for a couple of cycle changes while passengers squeezed aboard - and was pretty full when it arrived where I was, at North Terrace,
The Adelaide trams are well patronised, and do not 'swallow crowds' like a Melbourne E due to fewer doors.
Perhaps Adelaide might consider buying Bombardier Es rather than more Madrid Citadis trams?
Mal Rowe - who reckons that Adelaide trams need to be bigger and more frequent in peak periods