Luxembourg site description

Sales-Lentz is operating an autonomous bus service connecting the Campus Contern (an office complex in Luxemburg providing a 100% natural, pollution and allergen-free environment to its tenants) to the Sandweiler-Contern train station, located 1 km away.

An extension towards the Zoning Chaux de Contern, at a distance of 3 km, is under planning. This first pilot provides SLA the required experience for the introduction of autonomous vehicle services to other sites in Luxembourg, complementing the public transportation shared services they already offer.

In addition Sales-Lentz operates in Pfaffenthal, a valley in the city of Luxembourg, two shuttles on a short track connecting a residential area with the train and funicular station of Pfaffenthal as well as with the panoramic elevator in Pfaffenthal, that goes up to the city of Luxembourg.

With an area of 2,586 square kilometers, Luxembourg is one of the smallest sovereign states in Europe. It has a population of 585.000, with a high population growth (2,5% per year) over the last decade. Luxembourg is a major European Economic centre and the 2nd richest country in the world (IMF, 2015). Luxembourg has one of the world’s largest numbers of car ratio (3rd worldwide with 680 cars per 1000 persons).
Luxembourg has efficient road, rail and air transport facilities and services, with a 147 km of motorways connecting the capital to adjacent countries. The urban transport services are based on urban and regional bus lines and a tramway is under construction. A first part of the line is operational since late 2017 and the complete service is expected to be operational in 2020/21. Luxembourg is a pioneer in electro-mobility, having introduced hybrid buses since 2009 and with a strategic plan to reach all-electric public transport within the next decade with the installation of solar panels and use of Green electricity. The new tramway aspires to be a multimodal line, acting as backbone for a greener public transportation. The public transportation network is composed of more than 340 lines operated by different transport operators under the control of the government (RGTR – Réseau Général des Transports Routiers).
In early September 2017, Luxembourg approved the creation of a test zone for self-driving cars, in the south and centre of Luxembourg, in collaboration with France and Germany.

THE PILOT SITE

Since September 2018, Sales-Lentz is running 3 autonomous shuttles on two sites:

  • Pfaffenthal, a valley in the city of Luxembourg, where two shuttles run on a short track connecting the train and funicular station of Pfaffenthal with the panoramic lift in Pfaffenthal, that goes up to the city of Luxembourg. Services on this line started on 20.09.2018.
  • Contern, an industrial area located around 10 km east of Luxembourg City, where one shuttle connects the train station of Contern-Sandweiler with “Campus Contern”, a real estate development company. Services on this line started on 19.09.2018.

The pilot sites, described in more details below, are as of November 2018, but can change throughout the project. It is also possible that the services will not be maintained on both sites throughout the whole project duration, and efforts might rather focus on one site.

Contern

One NAVYA Autonom Shuttle is running on the site of Contern, between two stations: the new train station, and the Campus Contern. First, passengers will have to walk 300 m from the train station to the shuttle stop. An extension of the route to the train station is planned for November 2018. The depot and charging station for the shuttle will be close to the Campus Contern, as shown below.

The expected main users are employees working at Campus Contern and the companies nearby, and commuting by public transport. Consequently, the main expected usage scenarios are commuters arriving to Contern in the morning or leaving the area in the evening via the train station to get to and from work.

Pfaffenthal

Two NAVYA Autonom Shuttles are running on the site of Pfaffenthal between two stations: the train and funicular station of Pfaffenthal, and the panoramic lift in Pfaffenthal that leads up to the city of Luxembourg. The track has two stops and three stations. The depot and charging station for the shuttles are close to the station of the Pfaffenthal lift, as shown on the map below.

The speed limit on the whole route has been reduced to 30 km/h. In order to avoid massive overtaking by cars, SLA is challenging Navya as shuttle manufacturer to increase the maximum shuttle speed from the current 18 km/h to 25 km/h as soon as possible, with a mid-term objective of 30 km/h and a long-term objective of 45 km/h.

The main problem in Pfaffenthal was to find a mobile depot where we could park the shuttle during the night. The depot is especially important during winter conditions.

Different kinds of user groups are expected for this pilot site: commuters going to and coming from work, tourists, local residents, passers-by, etc. The main use scenarios envisaged are:

Commuters:

  1. Commuters arrive at the train station and take the shuttle to get to the lift to reach the city centre, where bus connections are available.
  2. Commuters take the shuttle to get to the funicular station to get to Kirchberg, where bus and tram connections are available.

Tourists

Going from the old town to Kirchberg or the other way around.

Local residents

Taking the shuttle to get to the lift to reach the city centre or reaching the funicular station to get to Kirchberg.