Dresden, Germany

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Dresden Siemens/AdTranz NGT6DD 2500-series 2546 at Postplatz on route 4. Photo by Peter Ehrlich, March 2005.


Tatra PCCs. Dresden's Tatra PCCs were all built new between 1968 and 1984, and all surviving units were rebuilt twice in the 1990s. The "224" series are driving motors and are coupled in 2 or 3 car trains, and are model T4DMT. There are approximately 85 of these PCCs still in daily service. Series "244", designated TB4D, are non-driving motors with pantographs, and were rebuilt from driving motors in the 1990s. In most cases, the driving positions have been removed, but the 244s can operate on their own power, which is done only in yard movements. About 45 of the 244s remain. Series "274" are PCC trailers, model B4DMS, and have PCC trucks but no motors or pantographs. Only 20 of these units (down from 65 or so) are still active, and are only used on 3-car trains. The second unit of a train can be either a 244 type or another 224 series driving motor. With DVB likely to order more Bombardier low-floor trams, the days of the Tatras will reach a close, probably some time after the year 2010, putting an end to the legacy of the Communist-era tram in Dresden.

Siemens/AdTranz Low-Floor LRVs. Beginning in 1994, DVB set out to modernize the tram system. It began by ordering 47 single-end 30-meter-long low floor trams and 13 double-end 30-meter trams from Siemens/AdTranz. The single-end trams are numbered from 2501 to 2547, delivered between 1995 and 1998. The double-end trams are numbered 2581 to 2593, and were received between 1996 and 1998. The double enders are used on lines 42 and 12, which require a switchback at the Schillerplatz end. 2580s surplus to lines 42/12 are used on other routes. Many of the 2500s carry all-over advertising.

Bombardier Low-Floor LRVs. Continuing with its modernization program, DVB ordered 23 single-end 45-meter-long low floor trams from Bombardier, which had bought out AdTranz and which are nearly identical in appearance to the 2500s and 2580s. The 2700s were delivered in 2001 and 2002 and are operated on heavily-used routes 2, 3, 7, 11, 13 and 41. These cars are numbered 2701 to 2723.

The newest trams in Dresden are 45-meter-long, 12-axle Bombardier low-floor LRVs numbered in the 2800 series, 2801-2828. 32 of these luxurious trams were ordered, with deliveries beginning in 2003, and 28 were on the property and in service in early 2005. They are used on lines 2, 7, 11 and 41. Each 2800-series tram is also named for a Dresden-area community, suburb or district name (examples: 2801 = Lautzen, 2806 = Görlitz, etc.).

Cargo Trams and Work Trams. One of the most unique features of the Dresden system is the operation of Cargo Trams. These are double-end units consisting of a power car on each end and four or five trailers in between. Only the lead power unit has its pantograph in the up position. These "trains" operate between a railroad spur and a Volkswagen plant located along one of the tram routes, carrying parts for building new VW Phaeton luxury cars for the domestic and European Union market. Both loaded and empty Cargo Trams pass through Postplatz.

The Cargo Tram motor units and intermediate cars were built 2000/2001 by Schalke, and are owned and operated by DVB. They operate on "Route 58" and although these trams carry no passengers, the electronic tram stop route arrival boards will flash "58" when one of these unique freight trams is approaching.

DVB also rosters a number of work trams, converted from retired passenger units. One of these, #201.113, a grinder built in 1959 by Gotha, is included in the photos.

NumbersYearsManufacturer/Model (notes)
224.001-224.1211971-1983Tatra T4DMT
224.201-224.2951973-1984Tatra T4DMT
224.501-224.5871974-1976Tatra T4DMT (total 303, about 85 remain)
226.001-226.0041985-1988Tatra ?
244.001-244.0551968-1979Tatra TB4D (total 55, about 45 remain)
274.001-274.1651971-1984Tatra B4DMS (trailers)
276.001-276.0021985-1988Tatra B4DMS (trailers)
2501-25471996-1999Siemens/Adtranz (low floor)
2581-25932000-2001Siemens/Adtranz (low floor double ended)
2701-27232001-2002Siemens (low floor)
2801-28322003-2004Bombardier (low floor)
2001-2005?2001Schalke CarGoTram


Dresdner Verkhersbetriebe operates two "Bergbahn", mountain railways, which run between the upper and lower Loschwitz districts on the bank of the river Elbe in northeast Dresden. The older, and westernmost, Bergbahn is a standard funicular called the Standseilbahn. It was opened in 1895 and is 547 meters long, and travels through two tunnels. The other is a Schwebebahn ("swinging railway") funicular. Opened in 1901, the 273.8-meter ride was designed by Eugen Langen, the designer of the more well known Schwebebahn in Wuppertal. In 2001, the Schwebebahn was completely rebuilt. DVB operates both Bergbahn, but their fare structures are independent of the tram and bus system, although passes are accepted. The two rides operate during daytime hours only.

Photo Gallery

Image 10855
(77k, 820x520)
Photo by: Theo Neutelings

Image 14016
(166k, 720x478)
Photo by: Peter Ehrlich
Location: Konigsstraße/Tannenstraße

Image 15423
(181k, 720x478)
Photo by: Peter Ehrlich
Location: Albertplatz

Image 15481
(159k, 720x478)
Photo by: Peter Ehrlich
Location: Münchenerplatz

Image 38769
(129k, 820x570)
Photo by: Theo Neutelings

Image 59016
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Photo by: Steffen Petrasch
Location: Elbe Park

Image 81454
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Photo by: Richard Panse
Location: Postplatz

Image 81457
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Photo by: Richard Panse
Location: Postplatz

Image 81524
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Photo by: Richard Panse
Location: Neustadt Bahnhof

Image 81527
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Photo by: Richard Panse
Location: Neustadt Bahnhof

Image 81538
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Photo by: Richard Panse
Location: Hellersiedlung

Image 81541
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Photo by: Richard Panse
Location: Hellersiedlung

Image 81547
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Photo by: Richard Panse
Location: Synagogue

Image 81581
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Photo by: Richard Panse
Location: Hauptbahnhof

Image 81587
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Photo by: Richard Panse
Location: Hauptbahnhof

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Page Credits

By Peter Ehrlich.

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