GEC Transportation Projects Ltd

GEC Transportation Projects Ltd., (GEC-TPL) was established in 1974 and was based at St Albans and Borehamwood, Hertfordshire. It specialised in the design, execution and management of major railway and mass transit electrification projects around the world. In 1981 GEC-TPL was transferred to Trafford Park in Manchester took over residual responsibility for vehicle design from GEC Traction, e.g. British Railways Class 91s and locomotive equipment design, e.g., British Railways Class 90s. GEC-TPL project managed 406 track kilometres of electrification in Taiwan in 1984. It involved the design, supply and installation of equipment including catenary, substations, telecommunications, locomotives and multiple units. The company also supplied the 134, 3-car trains and project managed the equipment of Lines 3 and 4 of Seoul Metropolitan Subway Corporation.

Closer to home, GEC-TPL was the project management company for Phase 1 of the Docklands Light Railway and the Manchester ‘Metrolink’ and supplied the initial vehicles for both systems. In 1987, GEC-TPL contracted to supply the body mounted power equipment for the initial build of Trans Manche Super Trains, later known as ‘Eurostars’, the bar car mechanical parts for which were supplied by its long term partner Metropolitan Cammell which later became part of GEC-TPL in 1989.

In 1989, GEC Transportation Projects Ltd became part of the joint company, GEC Alsthom Transportation Projects Ltd., when GEC and Alsthom of France, part of Compagnie Générale d’Electricité (CGE) formed GEC Alsthom. The combined company acquired Metropolitan Cammell at this time. (Alsthom’s name had earlier been derived from ‘Alsace Thomson-Houston’, thereby revealing its earlier parentage from Thomson-Houston of America, as also had the British Thomson-Houston Co., of Rugby, another GEC constituent). In 1998 the company formally changed its name to ALSTOM.