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There's soon to be a new front seat to nab in south east London.
That's right, the DLR is getting new trains... in 2023. TfL has awarded the contract to Construcciones y Auxiliar de Ferrocarriles, S.A. to manufacture new DLR trains. They replace the oldest parts of the rolling stock, which are nearly 30 years old and have reached the end of their intended design life.
Similar to the new Overground trains, these new DLR trains will be walkthrough, with air conditioning and USB charging points. 43 trains will be manufactured, to replace the 33 oldest on the network, with an additional 10 purely boosting capacity.
TfL argues that boosting capacity of the DLR is essential in the Royal Docks and Isle of Dogs, when it comes to providing homes and jobs. The boosted capacity could also be essential if the DLR extension to Thamesmead is built.
Jon Fox, TfL's Director of Rail and Sponsored Services, said:
Replacing the oldest trains on the DLR and introducing a new modern fleet will ensure the railway continues to support the current and future growth in the Docklands area. With walk-through carriages, real time travel information, air conditioning and mobile device charging points, the new trains will provide customers with a more comfortable and reliable service, replacing rolling stock that are nearly 30 years old and coming to the end of their operational life.
If you're feeling nostalgic for old DLR trains, don't worry. Firstly, you still have four years until these ones are replaced. And secondly, there are some even older ones still in use. You just have to go to Essen in Germany to catch one.