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Strasbourg’s tram-pedestrian mall: How “transit priority” and “pedestrian-friendly” are blended in Europe

11 October 2013
As evening approaches, a tram glides through Strasbourg's Place Kléber as pedestrians stroll along the other track. Photo: Franz Roski.

As evening approaches, a tram glides through Strasbourg’s Place Kléber as pedestrians stroll along the other track. Photo: Franz Roski.

Since urban rail supporters been discussing possible alignment designs for the Guadalupe-Lamar (G-L) corridor, the need for transit-priority lanes, and other issues, it might be helpful and interesting to observe how Europeans address this issue — typically, by converting entire streets to transit-pedestrian malls.

In this case, these recent photos (taken late in the day on 25 Sep. 2013 and posted to the online Eurotrams list by Franz A. Roski) show the transit-pedestrian mall in the French city of Strasbourg.


An A-Line tram approaches Homme de Fer (Iron Man) station as pedestrians stroll alongside the open track. Photo: Franz Roski.

An A-Line tram approaches Homme de Fer (Iron Man) station as pedestrians stroll alongside the open track. Photo: Franz Roski.


An A-Line tram arrives at Homme de Fer station as a D-Line tram for the opposite direction waits at the in the opposite platform.  Photo: Franz Roski.

An A-Line tram arrives at Homme de Fer station as a D-Line tram for the opposite direction waits at the in the opposite platform. Photo: Franz Roski.


Major crossing of different tram routes near Homme de Fer.  Photo: Franz Roski.

Major crossing of different tram routes near Homme de Fer. Photo: Franz Roski.


Another view of the tram line crossing near Homme de Fer — trams coming, going, and crossing!  Photo: Franz Roski.

Another view of the tram line crossing near Homme de Fer — trams coming, going, and crossing! Photo: Franz Roski.


• Notice the crowds — street capacity for motor vehicles is gone … but look at all the people that have come there, mostly by transit. Where would they park all their cars, anyway?

• Notice the safety issue — pedestrians comfortably, safely walking around, next to, in back of, even in front the light rail trams.

• Notice the tram traffic — trams coming and going, trams crossing the tracks of other tram lines …

Food for thought.

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2 comments

  1. I have been there and it is fantastic but hardly care free. There was quite an adjustment period for these streets and their whole central city program. There was an extensive planning/policy program in place years before the new LRT systems appeared. Everything from pedestrian systems and parking rules were studied, perfected and finally put into operation before the new rail lines appeared. There is a complex series of rules and allowances for commercial vehicles to get access to the area to supply all those stores, rules which would be difficult to pass in any north american city for many reasons. The one thing about those LRV ‘s, they are not moving quickly at these points and the locals complain that they are too slow and not all the shoppers down there like being walking buddies with 30+ metric tonne LRV’s.It makes a fantastic picture but, it took a long time to get to that point, a long boring, planning and policy program filled decade and a half before rails even started to be laid down.


  2. Awesome post.



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