The Marconi Express is a mass rapid transport system known as “People Mover”. It allows you to easily reach the centre of Bologna and the Bologna Centrale railway station from the “Guglielmo Marconi” Airport. The goal is to create a comfortable, fast and frequent connection to the city that improves the citizens’ and tourists’ travel experience, and also to expand the users of the Bologna airport by making its flight offer “within train reach”.
The 5 km ride takes 7’30” minutes. The vehicles, equipped with rubber wheels, run on their own track at an average height of about 6-7 meters above the ground. Each vehicle has a capacity of 50 passengers. The system, in the current configuration with 3 vehicles, in rush hour can transport 560 passengers per hour and direction. There is also the possibility of introducing a fourth vehicle to adapt to growth in demand.
The vehicles, manufactured by the Swiss company Intamin, are electric and fully automatic, monitored by the operators in the control room.
On the platform, sliding doors prevent passengers from entering the track when the vehicle is not present. When the Marconi Express is in the station, its doors open at the sliding doors of the platform and create a safe passage without gradients to get on and off comfortably from the vehicle.
A SUSTAINABLE INFRASTRUCTURE
The Marconi Express is a highly ecological and sustainable vehicle: it allows thousands of cars to be removed from the roads and, with its photovoltaic panels integrated on the track, produces about 35% of the energy required for its operation. This means 300 tonnes less of carbon dioxide per year, comparable to the effect of about 14,000 trees.
The salient feature of the people mover technology is that of adapting the frequency of the rides to the current demand in real time. This flexibility, in addition to having important benefits for customers, also makes it possible to optimize the costs of managing the infrastructure.
The engineering companies MATE and STS from Bologna carried out the coordinated design of the infrastructure, while architect Massimo Iosa Ghini conceived the architectural project.
THE LINK BRIDGE
To cross the ring road and the motorway, a bridge with a span of about 90 meters was created, designed by architect Iosa Ghini, with two large portals that characterize it.
SAFETY AND SECURITY
The entire path of the monorail is equipped with a safety walkway that provides a system of stairs every 500 meters to reach the ground in case of evacuation.