RTD A-Line Opening Countdown: THREE DAYS!

Now that we have climbed over that Monday wall, I am pleased to announce that there are only THREE days left until the A-Line, connecting the world to Downtown Denver, opens. Today we are going to look into the commuter trains that will be hauling passengers to and from Denver International Airport at a top speed of 79 miles per hour.

The Silverliner V looks and feels like a very classic heavy rail / subway train. These trains are large, silver, and mean serious business.

2016-04-19_SilverlinerV-6 2016-04-19_SilverlinerV-7

RTD purchased 66 of these cars, in the married pair configuration for $300 million. The trains were built in Korea, tested in Philadelphia, and then shipped to Denver. Philadelphia made a great candidate for testing because they use the same exact trains for SEPTA (Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority). The first Silverliner V’s arrived in Denver on November 20th and initially had to be pulled into Denver Union Station for testing since the overhead catenary wire system was still under construction.

2016-04-19_SilverlinerV-5 2016-04-19_SilverlinerV-4

The 70 ton, 600 hp Silverliner V has been in full speed testing for months now and can be seen at regular 15-30 minute intervals along the line.

2016-04-19_SilverlinerV-1 2016-04-19_SilverlinerV-2

In three days, we will all be able to ride this brand new type of train, how incredibly exciting!

By | 2016-12-27T17:32:43+00:00 April 19, 2016|Categories: Events & Meetings, Infrastructure, Technology, Transit|Tags: , |6 Comments


  1. D.C. April 19, 2016 at 4:26 pm

    The trains certainly look classic looking. I wonder why RTD did not go with something more modern looking? Cost?

    • Paul April 20, 2016 at 9:30 am

      Cost and timing. RTD opted to piggyback on Philly’s purchase of Silverliner V’s from Hyundai which led to a lower per-unit cost and occurred around the same time.

  2. Today’s Headlines | Streetsblog Denver April 20, 2016 at 7:44 am

    […] DenverUrbanism Dives Deep Into the Train Cars on the A Line […]

  3. Mike April 20, 2016 at 8:45 am

    Has anyone been able to get any shots of the new transit center on the ground floor of the new DIA expansion? I think I read that RTD is going to move all their operations from level 5 down to the lower level on the other side of the hotel from the new A-line terminal.

  4. David April 20, 2016 at 9:49 am

    Did RTD ever evaluate true high speed rail as an option? Does anyone know what the cost might have been? Considering we are going to spend 1.8 billion on 10 miles of I-70 along the same route, I wonder if it could have been a viable possibility.

    • Citizen Kane April 20, 2016 at 11:08 am

      That’s really not a practial option for the A-Line.
      High-speed rail is really for inter-city routes. Those high-speed rails (Europe, Japan) only get up to speed once they’re out of the city.
      The A-Line, while it does go out to the airport, is at its heart a commuter line.
      An appropriate car was chosen.

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