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Passports please - Off in the distance
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May 2016
 

The Bellinghman
Date: 2009-03-10 13:04
Subject: Passports please
Security: Public
Trams are an undeniably urban institution. In fact, almost my personal definition of civilisation is the presence of a tram network that you can jump on and off. But not all trams spend all their time on city streets: some head out through the suburbs to the villages.

And one, The Basel #10 to Rodersdorf manages more than that. As it hurtles along the contour lines, hugging the green hillsides at a most-untramlike speed, it does what very few trams do.

It crosses an international border. It actually enters the EU, clipping a tip of Alsace and stopping at the station of Leymen in France while there.

(Goodness knows how the ticket machines work at that station. We didn't step down to see whether they insisted on CHF or EU, though it wouldn't surprise me to see dual currency machines there.)

Oh, and of course, this being Europe, the border is almost unsigned. We certainly weren't asked for any ID, not seeing even a ticket inspector.

Annoyingly, when we reached Rodersdorf, back in Switzerland again, it was a little too late to have lunch. However, the little station building restaurant has the interesting feature that the ceiling has, instead of beams, rails and sleepers overhead.
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User: furrfu
Date: 2009-03-10 13:21 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Trams rule. The tram museum in Crich rules, also. I wish there were more trams in the UK. They're so much more civilised than busses. And quieter, and less fume-belchy.

There are/will be so-called "fast trams" in the Antwerp region on Belgium, I believe, which will cross the border with Netherlands. I think the "fast" means they'll go, you know, faster than trams usually do.
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The Bellinghman
User: bellinghman
Date: 2009-03-10 13:32 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
There is also, apparently, a German company Saarbahn that has been running a tram line from Saarbrucken into Sarreguemines in France for a bit over a decade. Looking at these pictures, they're probably 'supertrams' too.

The Basel #10 though is definitely a tram: see this picture. It's not even one of the newest tramsets: it looks quite old,
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