A Light Railway for Quest City

A WebQuest for Grades 10 - 12 (Technical English/Transport)

Designed for BP-BLTM by

Klaus Leonhardt and Claudia Rühmekorb-Schwindt



Introduction | Task | Process  


The former military airfield northeast of Quest City is being converted into a holiday charter airport. The City Council and the Airport company have agreed to create a public transport  system which links the airport to the city going beyond to the recreational area as well (see map below). The Council members, for environmental reasons, are favouring a rail system and have advertised a competition among globally operating planners. You are members of such a planning company and have to submit an overall concept for an appropriate Light Railway system. At this early planning stage financial matters may still be neglected.

Click on map to get pdf-version.


The Task

You are requested to present a light railway concept for Quest City which interlinks all places of interest in a sensible way. It must not consist of more than two separate lines. In your introduction you will show that you have the most comprehensive knowledge about environmentally-friendly passenger transport. You will also impress your audience with important details of three already perfectly running railway systems that you have designed. 

In the course of your presentation you will demonstrate and explain 

  • the routing: stops (where and why?), tunnels, bridges, future extensions
  • the type of railway: tram or underground etc., speed, gauge
  • the types of vehicles (special needs?), capacity 
  • train frequency and number of trains 
  • proposed design (shape, colours, name, logo)

The Process
  1. First you'll be assigned to a team of 3 students.
  2. Print out as many copies of the area map as you will need. 
  3. Inform yourself about the environmental compatibility of these railways to include a short report in your presentation. 
  4. Find out about the details of already existing light railways so that in your presentation you can pretend to have planned three of them with your staff and report about their advantages. Useful information may be found here: 
    Railway glossaries
    Railway projects
    Light rail information
  5. Based on the map, draw a routing plan showing all stops. 
  6. Based on your findings in the Web, decide which railway concept would be the most appropriate for the Quest City area. Consider e.g. the following aspects:
    routing, tunnels or bridges, stops, type of vehicles, train frequency, capacity, speed, gauge (use of existing railtrack?), future extension possibilities.
  7. Create a design of your railway (shape, colours, name, logo, etc.) 
    Visit the manufacturers' homepages:
  8. Prepare a presentation to persuade the councillors of the excellence of your concept. You may use any presentation devices available (posters, transparencies, maps etc.)