Tracks and depots
The length of the two-way tram line track is 38 kilometres. Tram traffic uses around 30 kilometres of its own lanes in Helsinki. There is 3.5 kilometres of grassed track, which looks more attractive and binds dust. In addition to the tram lines, there are also tracks for back-up connections and depots.
HKL Tram Unit maintains the tram lanes and trams stops and carries out some of their renovations. Additionally, electrical maintenance manages the installations and maintenance of the overhead lines and other electrical technology for the tram tracks and maintains the stops it is responsible for, while track maintenance manufactures the necessary track components, such as junctions, points and curves.
Tram tracks have a lot to cope with. For example, in Mäkelänkatu the trams get to run at full speed in their own lane, while in the narrow streets of the city centre they have to share the space with the rest of the traffic. Helsinki’s track profile with its tight curves and hills is extremely demanding in places.
The Tram Transport unit has three depots: in Koskela, Töölö and Vallila. HKL’s trams are stored and serviced at the Töölö and Koskela depots. The Vallila depot also handles larger works, such as crash repairs and renovations.
Koskela is the largest tram depot. Two thirds of the trams are serviced and stored there, and most of the tram lines also depart from Koskela: lines 1, 2, 3, 6, 6T, 7, 8 and 9. The depot also houses training activities as well as track electricity and track repair operations.
Töölö is the smallest depot. It caters to tram lines 4, 5 and 10. About a third of the trams are serviced at the Töölö depot. The depot has a traffic control centre, and it also houses the HKL Tram Unit clearance truck, H055. Next to the depot is The Tram Museum.
The Vallila depot houses HKL Tram Unit’s administrative operations, a tram repair workshop and track maintenance operations.