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Testing Begins For West Light Rail Line

DENVER (CBS4)– Testing began Thursday on the West Light Rail Line that connects downtown Denver to Jefferson County.

The first light rail car started the test run on the route that began at the Auraria West Station and concluded at the Jefferson County Government Center. It could take as long as three days to travel the line that’s still under construction.

The testing is to make surer the vehicle clears surrounding elements like bridges, tunnels, fencing, poles and station platforms.

The West Line is more than 12 miles long. It is the first rail line of RTD FasTracks project to be constructed. The line is scheduled to open to the public in May 2013.

“We have a test train we’re pulling out here. The train isn’t moving under its own power, it’s being towed. We’re out here checking clearances from the train to all the poles and all the other items along the rail,” said RTD Project Manager Jim Starling.

“The testing we’re doing today is clearance checks. The next tests that we’ll be doing is to check the wire that provides the power for the train. It’ll be several months, probably this fall, before we start doing that.”

RTD will continue testing intermittently to make sure things are ready to go for the launch of the West Rail Line.

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