Duke University Medical Center PRT Modernization Study
Durham, North Carolina, USA
JAI recently assisted the Duke University Medical Center (DUMC) in Durham, North Carolina in the development a solution and action plan for the refurbishment of the aging PRT system. The unique Duke Personal Rapid Transit (PRT) system, with small vehicles propelled by linear induction motors and suspended on air cushion, has fulfilled its life cycle and was in urgent need for either complete refurbishment or replacement. The system has served the medical complex well as it is totally integrated into the existing facilities and extensively utilized. JAI’s scope of work included the following tasks:
- Technology and operational assessment;
- An industry/market review and potential supplier analysis;
- Train control evaluation and upgrade assessment;
- Generated order-of-magnitude cost levels (capital and operational) for reconditioned system;
- Evaluated human impacts evaluation and ADA accessibility;
- Conducted maintenance facility impacts evaluation;
- Supplier evaluation and assessment.
JAI was able to determine that in order to implement a comparable transit system today, DUMC would have to spend at least $60-$70 million. Based on this number, it was worth considering refurbishing it for another 20-30 years of successful and convenient service. JAI’s input was vital for DUMC to reach an informed decision on the future of the PRT system.