Movares has been working on the Amsterdam metro network since 2008, for our customer Metro en Tram. One of our projects is ‘Signalling & Control Metro’ or the ‘S&C contract’. This project involved Movares replacing the existing signalling and control systems on the Amsterdam metro and installing entirely new systems on the Noord/Zuid (North/South) line.

Metro en Tram asked Movares to contribute its technical knowledge to the call for tenders, contracting and execution of the S&C contract and to the evaluation of the designs submitted. This required specialized knowledge of systems that do not yet exist in this form in the Netherlands. Movares is providing this expertise throughout all phases of the project, from start to finish.Currently, the S&C contract team consists of some 20 people, including six Movares staff. Together, they are carrying out all the work required to replace the existing signalling and control systems on the Amsterdam metro and install new systems on the Noord/Zuid line.

At the end of 2015, work will be complete on equipping part of the existing metro network (between Amstelveenseweg and Isolatorweg) with CBTC (Communication Based Train Control). This system is comparable with ERTMS level 3. Train detection is carried out using auto-location via eurobalises. Communication between the metro system and the ATC system is via Wi-Fi. There is also a fallback system in the form of axle-counters and trackside signals. Introducing this system will require modifications to all rolling stock.

Meanwhile, work on the Noord/Zuidlijn is moving ahead. Following a test phase and operations without passengers, the Noord/Zuidlijn will enter service in October 2017. But much still needs to happen before then. A complete new network system has to be built, and on the new stations the infrastructure has to be installed for OVCP, the Dutch public transport smartcard system – barriers, partitions, service doors, emergency exits and ticket machines. In addition, the CBI remote control system will be installed (Centraal Besturing Installatie, comparable to SCADA – Supervisory Control And Data Acquisition), together with station systems such as new cameras, passenger information systems and public address systems. The network system, CBI and the station systems will also be installed on the existing network.

This project is exceptionally complex, given the interaction between the major new-build project and the existing metro network and the implementation of complete new systems that have to be handed over as an integrated product. In addition, the work is being carried out for a number of customers. The challenge is to deliver all these individual elements to schedule, as one integrated product that can be demonstrated to be safe.