ANNAPOLIS, Md. – Mar. 20 (SEND2PRESS NEWSWIRE) — Village Technology, an urban-solutions think-tank in Annapolis, Maryland, has been awarded a U.S. patent (7,082,879) – with a Canadian patent pending – for its unique SMRrTRAM People-Mover method that transforms affordable, zero-emission electric buses into high-convenience people-movers for congested urban corridors.
The SMRrTRAM design uses computer logic to synchronize the movements of oppositely moving electric tram-buses in a single, narrow, dedicated guidelane. The synchronization method provides pedestrians the opportunity to board a tram-bus going in either direction every 150 seconds from each stop along the route. The elevator-like convenience of the synchronization generates carrying capacities up to 5000 people per hour. Most important for cities and traffic planners, the single SMRrTRAM guidelane can be inserted, on-grade, into virtually any existing streetscape without eliminating traffic lanes.
The method’s use of simple, battery-electric tram-buses makes the SMRrTRAM people-mover an affordable alternative to expensive fixed-rail or elevated guideway systems. The simple electric tram-buses, which can be manufactured by a number of companies in the U.S. and Canada, have the additional advantage of being able to be driven out of their guidelane to share maintenance and storage facilities with conventional buses.
“We believe SMRrTRAM offers a breakthrough opportunity for congested urban business and shopping corridors,” said Village Technology president and founder, John Alt. “It offers, for the first time, a highly convenient, yet practical means for pedestrians to move conveniently back and forth through congested urban areas, for connecting intercept parking facilities with downtown cores, or for extending pedestrian access to and from major event sites, like convention centers. And it’s a solution cities can easily afford to build.”
Village Technology, comprised of Alt and two partners, has been developing and studying the SMRrTRAM method and its applications for several years. With the U.S. patent in hand, and Canadian patent pending, they are now seeking development and financing partners to build a demonstration SMRrTRAM project and make the system available to cities and urban contexts as rapidly as possible.
“This technology fits perfectly with the emerging goals of reducing carbon emissions and building urban sustainability,” says Alt. “One of these zero-emission people-movers could replace thousands of parking-search car movements every day – and eliminate the carbon emissions those car movements would have produced.”
For more information about the SMRrTRAM People-Mover Architecture, visit: www.villagetechnology.com.
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Original Story ID: (2641) :: 2007-03-0320-005
Original Keywords: Village Technology, SMRrTRAM People Mover, US patent 7082879, zero emission electric buses, transportation, battery electric tram buses, John Alt, Canadian patent pending, reducing carbon emissions and building urban sustainability, urban solutions thinktank Village Technology