As more and more people use the railways, more space is needed on the trains.
Luckily modern trains have more room on board than older trains because more of the mechanical parts are underneath the carriages. And in the future trains might look even more different!
Future trains may use technology to change the space inside. Luggage areas could be converted into bicycle racks at times of the day when more cyclists are travelling to work.
Removable seats could change carriages from carrying passengers to carrying freight at quieter times!
We already have double decker buses to fit more people on – and double-decker trains exist in Europe!
It means you can get nearly twice as many passengers on board – or use the space for restaurants, play areas – or extra storage for bicycles and luggage.
The trouble is that the gauge on most of the railway lines in the UK isn’t big enough for double decker train.
Gauge is the minimum width that track needs between other tracks and objects like bridges, tunnels and platforms.
Increasing the amount of space on existing lines would be VERY expensive – everything from platforms to bridges to overheard wires would have to be changed. It would also inconvenience people who live near the railways.
New high speed lines, like to the Channel Tunnel, are built to a bigger gauge and already run bigger trains.
One change that is being introduced are trains that have open gangways between carriages.
As well as allowing passengers to move from crowded cars to ones with more room, they also have extra room for standing and create a sense of security.
Everyone can agree that being comfortable is important – especially if you’re on a long journey – modern trains already have heating and air conditioning.
In the future trains will be connected, so as well as being able to use the internet, passengers will be able to use smart technology more and more.
Imagine – instead of ticket checks in the carriages, sensors could read barcodes on your phone as you step on board and apps could show you where the free seats are, what’s on offer in the café – and even tell you whether the toilets are free!
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Britain’s Digital Railways, in association with the Royal Academy of Engineering Ingenious schemeAdd a comment
Britain’s Digital Railways
Bex and Dan from Fun Kids learn all about the future of Britain's railways, from signals to trains and tracks!