Railways / Germany: Electric Multiple Units / Talent 2 (442)
The "Talent 2" is a multiple unit railcar manufactured by Bombardier. Although the name suggests it would be derivate of the Talent railcars (acronym for "Talbot leichter Nahverkehrs-Triebwagen" = Talbot light regional mutiple unit railcar), the Talent 2 vehicles are technically not related to those cars. The first unit of this class with a maximum speed of 160 km/h was presented in 2008, regarding its front end design it soon got the nickname "Hamsterbacke" (hamster cheek).
Public Transport / France / Avignon
The tram in Avignon (90.000 inhabitants) in the Provence, famous for its bridge, was opened in October 2019. This was preceded by a difficult political process: after the decision to build a tram network of almost 15 kilometers in length was approved in 2010, the new city council elected in 2014 wanted to stop the project. However, after a number of contracts had already been signed and the vehicles had already been ordered, an exit would have meant immense costs for the city. As a compromise solution, it was decided to build a line with only 6 kilometers in length. Since the 14 trams intended for the original network were delivered, there was a considerable overstock of vehicles. Now the second line is to be built after all and line 1 will be given a new terminus "intra-muros", i.e. centrally within the city wall. The tram as well as the city buses in Avignon are managed by the municipal transport company → Orizo.