Monorail Refurbishment

siralgenon

TS Member
I'm a bit annoyed that the monorail station is still painted in the same drab colours and the monorails have received no up keep what so ever while it's been out of use for a year.
 

Kraken27

TS Member
I'm a bit annoyed that the monorail station is still painted in the same drab colours and the monorails have received no up keep what so ever while it's been out of use for a year.

Can't say I'm surprised - this sort of thing costs money & the monorail does not draw guests to the park. (Yes, some may moan when it's closed & they have to walk to/from the entrance plaza, but it's the rides that brinh the guests in).
 

Skyscraper

TS Member
Favourite Ride
Nemesis
There are perspex screens inside to separate parties. I noticed in a video the windows look in the exact same state as they did in 2019 though.
Actually, they are flexible plasic sheets that can be lifted up in the event of an evac. The windows at the end of each carrige (exept the driver cars) actually open for this purpose, so guests can move through the train during an emergency. For that reason, fixed perspex cannot be used.
 

AstroDan

TS Team
Favourite Ride
Steel Vengeance, Cedar Point
This still is taken from Shawn's ATR vlog from yesterday. Look at the state of it. Vinyl wraps crinkling, damp/moss/rot/mould under the vinyl on the door, graffiti etched into the paintwork. Just bloody awful! These aren't things the ride teams can solve - all that will solve it is money to properly sort it out.

:(

174185387_10102917011878845_6194893444717424011_n.jpg
 

JAMMYD778

TS Member
I used to really look forward to starting my day on the monorail. Hearing the upbeat station music, the exciting announcements on board and what not. Now it just looks depressing and does not provide a good first impression for your 'fantabulous' day of 'thrilliant' adventures ahead. :/

I really hope they can get the funds to give it the refurb it truly deserves, but somehow I'm doubtful.
 

Kraken27

TS Member
I really hope they can get the funds to give it the refurb it truly deserves, but somehow I'm doubtful.

The last refurb of the monorail trains in 2008 was very much instigated by the Marketing Department. Guest feedback / satisfaction scores for the monorail were very low due to the state it was in & were resulting in lower overall satisfaction scores for the park as a whole.

Personally I think any future refurb will have to be driven by marketing again. Will be interesting to see what happens, as those Von Roll trains must be on their last legs by now.
 

jon81uk

TS Member
I don't expect the walk to the park does them any favours with guest satisfaction either. They either need to replace the trains and sort out either platform gates or a decent load method or refocus the entrance of the park to be closer to parking.
 

Kraken27

TS Member
I don't expect the walk to the park does them any favours with guest satisfaction either. They either need to replace the trains and sort out either platform gates or a decent load method or refocus the entrance of the park to be closer to parking.

Fully agree on both points. But both options would be hugely expensive, so won't happen.

I've said it many times before, but what would Alton Towers be like today if Disney had chosen the site they were offered near the NEC on the M42 to develop EuroDisney (as it was)? My guess is that Alton Towers would be closed as a theme park.

Despite Merlin being second only to Disney, they have not got a clue. On the monorail front alone, just compare Disney's to Towers. One is modern & pretty high speed on concrete beam track. Towers is like a bumpy elevated go-kart ride with knackered old trains.
 

jon81uk

TS Member
Despite Merlin being second only to Disney, they have not got a clue.

I’ve ranted about this in another thread, the “second only to Disney” thing is irrelevant. It was how they described the size of the company when Blackstone acquired Tussauds. It has no real bearing on anything. Six Flags also has multiple theme park sites but they don’t the same comparisons. Merlin might operate a lot of midway sites but they aren’t a big theme park operator really and have nothing like the budget of Disney so those comparisons make no sense.

The Florida Disney monorail isn’t that modern anymore either, their trains are over 30 years old, although controls have been replaced and they have recently been adding automatic signalling.
It’s had many issues recently such as travelling with doors still open.

Hopefully AT do realise the importance of the system and do something soon to get a budget to sort it though!
 

tayspru

TS Member
Honestly the monorail really wouldn’t take that long for at least an aesthetic refresh , the insides are really quite grim these days.

- Replace all of the safety notice vinyls on the interior of each car (leek signs bulk order)

- Take a craft knife to the windows to allow for views out again, and brighten up the dank journey for guests. The monorails that remain in use are mostly one pattern (like the cow and jellybean) and wouldn’t suffer from exposed windows

- Have all trains play one audio track that covers the basics of the day. While some trains have kept their themed audio tracks, some just play the same loop of sound effects. This would take the most effort but with the other improvements of in park music the talent is there

In an ideal world the windows would be replaced entirely as many are cracked , but that would really up the cost

These are changes that could easily be implemented at minimal cost. The monorail is the start and end of many guests day and should really be a good impression
 

stealthyjim

TS Member
Favourite Ride
Montu
Honestly the monorail really wouldn’t take that long for at least an aesthetic refresh , the insides are really quite grim these days.

- Replace all of the safety notice vinyls on the interior of each car (leek signs bulk order)

- Take a craft knife to the windows to allow for views out again, and brighten up the dank journey for guests. The monorails that remain in use are mostly one pattern (like the cow and jellybean) and wouldn’t suffer from exposed windows

- Have all trains play one audio track that covers the basics of the day. While some trains have kept their themed audio tracks, some just play the same loop of sound effects. This would take the most effort but with the other improvements of in park music the talent is there

In an ideal world the windows would be replaced entirely as many are cracked , but that would really up the cost

These are changes that could easily be implemented at minimal cost. The monorail is the start and end of many guests day and should really be a good impression

I like this idea, it wouldn’t take much to improve the look of the monorail - giving merlin time to save their pennies for new trains
 

Rob F

TS Member
Tbh If and when Alton start replacing the trains i can see it being a gradual change proving no infrastructure changes are needed. Eg one new train a year To keep cap ex low
 

delta79

TS Member
Favourite Ride
Nemesis, Air
I think they would change to an automated train system. As this would cut personal costs, and would give a operational saving that would pay for the upgrade over the rolling stocks life

Sent from my SM-A217F using Tapatalk
 

Steve74

TS Member
I think they would change to an automated train system. As this would cut personal costs, and would give a operational saving that would pay for the upgrade over the rolling stocks life

Sent from my SM-A217F using Tapatalk
Would an automated system cut personnel costs though? I mean the Docklands Light Railway in London is driverless and controlled by a central system but there is still a member of staff on the trains to take over if needed. So I guess a member of staff would remain on the monorail trains too for the same reason (and to reassure guests in the event of a breakdown) - just like now?
 

Mi-Nigle

TS Member
I thought the Monorail pretty much was and automated system...no? I thought the member of staff on the train has door control, an emergency stop and little else.
 

Dave

TS Founding Member
It is an automated system, the staff member in the train is mostly there in the event of an evacuation. They also wouldn’t replace one train at a time as to replace the trains would require all the control systems to be changed and would make the old trains obsolete.
 
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