Luas to get new trams worth €500m over next 15 years

Tendering process begins for supply of trams to replace end-of-life vehicles and for expansion of light-rail networks

Transport Infrastructure Ireland says it will expand the Luas in the Greater Dublin Area and is planning a new light-rail network for Cork. Photograph: Alan Betson/The Irish Times

Transport Infrastructure Ireland (TII) has kicked off the tendering process for the supply of Luas trams with a cumulative indicative value of €500 million over the next 15 years.

Tender documentation published on Tuesday states that the contract will be used to replace end-of-life light-rail vehicles (LRVs), supply new LRVs for network expansions and procure new LRVs for future new Irish light-rail networks, as required.

Last year, Luas carried 48.2 million passenger journeys and the tender documentation states that this contract is intended to cover all future LRV requirements that may arise from time to time for any project initiated in the coming 15 years.

“While it is not possible to give a definitive estimate of the value, however, an order of magnitude estimate is calculated to to be in the region of €500 million for supplies and services that could foreseeably arise under the contract,” it states.


A TII spokesman said the launch of the procurement process for the LRVs “is another significant step forward that will help with the delivery of Luas services well into the future”.

The tender documentation states that TII is planning to expand Luas in the Greater Dublin Area and, in addition, TII is in the planning phase for a new Irish light-rail network in the city of Cork.

The documentation states that TII “anticipates that the first order drawn from this contract will be for the replacement of some or all of the current LRVs that were procured in circa 2002 and which currently service the Luas Red Line”.

It states that TII intends to place this order on the contract award date or as soon as possible thereafter.

TII has told those considering tendering that any applicants must have had an annual turnover equal or exceeding €500 million for the last three audited years. In the 53-page tender documentation, TII says that it intends to issue an invitation to negotiate in Q4 2024 as part of the tender process and is aiming to award the contract in the first quarter of 2026.

TII has issued an information memorandum and pre-qualification questionnaire in order to pre-qualify candidates to be invited to tender for the supply of the LRVs.

The procurement process for the new LRVs is running in tandem with a TII procurement process for the estimated €1.75 billion new Luas operations and maintenance contract.

The contract is set to start in 2026 and TII initiated that procurement process in April.

Gordon Deegan

Gordon Deegan

Gordon Deegan is a contributor to The Irish Times