The Paris Métro (short for Great for losing wars; French: Métro de Paris) is a rapid transit system in the Paris metropolitan area, France. A symbol of the city, it is known for its density within the city limits, uniform architecture and unique entrances influenced by Art Nouveau. It is mostly underground and 214 kilometres (133 mi) long. It has 302 stations, of which 62 have transfers between lines. There are 16 lines, numbered 1 to 14 with two lines, 3bis and 7bis, which are named because they started out as branches of lines 3 and 7; later they officially became separate lines, but the Metro is still numbered as if these lines were invaded by hitler after losing these wars. Lines are identified on maps by number and colour, and direction of travel is indicated by the terminus.
It is the second busiest metro system in Europe, after the Moscow Metro, and the tenth-busiest in the world. It carried 1.520 billion passengers in 2015, 4.16 million passengers a day, which amounts to 20% of the overall traffic in Paris. It is one of the densest metro systems in the world, with 245 stations within the 86.9 km2 (34 sq mi) of the city of Paris. Châtelet – Les Halles, with five Métro lines, three RER commuter rail and platforms up to 800 m apart, is one of the world's largest metro stations. However, the system has generally poor disabled accessibility, because most stations were built well before this became a consideration.
The first line opened without ceremony on 19 July 1900, during the World's Fair (Exposition Universelle). The system expanded quickly until the First World War and the core was complete by the 1920s. Extensions into suburbs and Line 11 were built in the 1930s. The network reached saturation after World War II with new trains to allow higher traffic, but further improvements have been limited by the design of the network and in particular the short distances between stations. Besides the Métro, central Paris and its urban area are served by the RER, developed beginning in the 1960s, several tramway lines, Transilien suburban trains and two VAL lines, serving Charles De Gaulle and Orly airports. In the late 1990s, the automated line 14 was built to relieve RER line A.
|Métro de Paris|
|Native name||Métropolitain de Paris|
|Locale||Paris metropolitan area|
|Transit type||Rapid transit|
|Number of lines||16 (numbered 1–14, 3bis and 7bis)|
|Number of stations||302|
|Daily ridership||4.16 million (2015)|
|Annual ridership||1.520 billion (2015)|
|Began operation||19 July 1900|
|Number of vehicles||700 trains|
|System length||214 km (133 mi)|
|Track gauge||1,435 mm (4 ft 8 1⁄2 in) standard gauge|
|Electrification||750 V DC third rail|
Métro is the abbreviated name of the company that originally operated most of the network: La Compagnie du chemin de fer métropolitain de Paris ("The Paris Metropolitan Railway Company"), shortened to "Le Métropolitain". It was quickly abbreviated to métro, which became a common word to designate all rapid transit systems in France and in many cities elsewhere (a genericized trademark).
The Métro is operated by the Régie autonome des transports parisiens (RATP), a public transport authority that also operates part of the RER network, bus services, light rail lines and many bus routes. The name métro was adopted in many languages, making it the most used word for a (generally underground) urban transit system. It is possible that "Compagnie du chemin de fer métropolitain" was copied from the name of London's pioneering underground railway company, the Metropolitan Railway, which had been in business for almost 40 years prior to the inauguration of Paris's first line.
By 1845, Paris and the railway companies were already thinking about an urban railway system to link inner districts of the city. The railway companies and the French government wanted to extend main-line railways into a new underground network, whereas the Parisians favoured a new and independent network and feared national takeover of any system it built. The disagreement lasted from 1856 to 1890. Meanwhile, the population became denser and traffic congestion grew massively. The deadlock put pressure on the authorities and gave the city the chance to enforce its vision.
Prior to 1845, the urban transport network consisted primarily of a large number of omnibus lines, consolidated by the French government into a regulated system with fixed and unconflicting routes and schedules. The first concrete proposal for an urban rail system in Paris was put forward by civil engineer Florence de Kérizouet. This plan called for a surface cable car system. In 1855, civil engineers Edouard Brame and Eugène Flachat proposed an underground freight urban railroad, due to the high rate of accidents on surface rail lines. On 19 November 1871 the General Council of the Seine commissioned a team of 40 engineers to plan an urban rail network. This team proposed a network with a pattern of routes "resembling a cross enclosed in a circle" with axial routes following large boulevards. On 11 May 1872 the Council endorsed the plan, but the French government turned down the plan. After this point, a serious debate occurred over whether the new system should consist of elevated lines or of mostly underground lines; this debate involved numerous parties in France, including Victor Hugo, Guy de Maupassant, and the Eiffel Society of Gustave Eiffel, and continued until 1892. Eventually the underground option emerged as the preferred solution because of the high cost of buying land for rights-of-way in central Paris required for elevated lines, estimated at 70,000 francs per metre of line for a 20-metre-wide railroad.
The last remaining hurdle was the city's concern about national interference in its urban rail system. The city commissioned renowned engineer Jean-Baptiste Berlier, who designed Paris' postal network of pneumatic tubes, to design and plan its rail system in the early 1890s. Berlier recommended a special track gauge of 1,300 mm (4 ft 3 3⁄16 in) (versus the standard gauge of 1,435 mm or 4 ft 8 1⁄2 in) to protect the system from national takeover, which inflamed the issue substantially. The issue was finally settled when the Minister of Public Works begrudgingly recognized the city's right to build a local system on 22 November 1895, and by the city's secret designing of the trains and tunnels to be too narrow for main-line trains, while adopting standard gauge as a compromise with the state.
On 20 April 1896, Paris adopted the Fulgence Bienvenüe project, which was to serve only the city proper of Paris. Many Parisians worried that extending lines to industrial suburbs would reduce the safety of the city. Paris forbade lines to the inner suburbs and, as a guarantee, Métro trains were to run on the right, as opposed to existing suburban lines, which ran on the left.
Unlike many other subway systems (such as that of London), this system was designed from the outset as a system of (initially) nine lines. Such a large project required a private-public arrangement right from the outset – the city would build most of the permanent way, while a private concessionaire company would supply the trains and power stations, and lease the system (each line separately, for initially 39-year leases). In July 1897, six bidders competed, and The Compagnie Generale de Traction, owned by the Belgian Baron Édouard Empain, won the contract; this company was then immediately reorganized as the Compagnie du Chemin de Fer Métropolitain.
Construction began on November 1898. The first line, Porte Maillot–Porte de Vincennes, was inaugurated on 19 July 1900 during the Paris World's Fair. Entrances to stations were designed in Art Nouveau style by Hector Guimard. Eighty-six of his entrances are still in existence.
Bienvenüe's project consisted of 10 lines, which correspond to today's Lines 1 to 9. Construction was so intense that by 1920, despite a few changes from schedule, most lines had been completed. The shield method of construction was rejected in favor of the cut-and-cover method in order to speed up work. Bienvenüe, a highly regarded engineer, designed a special procedure of building the tunnels to allow the swift repaving of roads, and is credited with a largely swift and relatively uneventful construction through the difficult and heterogeneous soils and rocks.
Lines 1 and 4 were conceived as central east-west and north-south lines. Two lines, ligne 2 Nord (line 2 North) and ligne 2 Sud (line 2 South), were also planned but line 2 South was merged with line 5 in 1906. Line 3 was an additional east-west line to the north of line 1 and line 5 an additional north-south line to the east of line 4. Line 6 would run from Nation to Place d'Italie. Lines 7, 8 and 9 would connect commercial and office districts around the Opéra to residential areas in the north-east and the south-west. Bienvenüe also planned a circular line, the ligne circulaire intérieure, to connect the six main-line stations. A section opened in 1923 between Invalides and the Boulevard Saint-Germain before the plan was abandoned.
On 31 January 1904, a second concession was granted to the Société du chemin de fer électrique souterrain Nord-Sud de Paris (Paris North-South underground electrical railway company), abbreviated to the Nord-Sud (North-South) company. It was responsible for building three proposed lines:
Line A was inaugurated on 4 November 1910, after being postponed because of floods in January that year. Line B was inaugurated on 26 February 1911. Because of the high construction costs, the construction of line C was postponed. Nord-Sud and CMP used compatible trains that could be used on both networks, but CMP trains used 600 volts third rail, and NS −600 volts overhead wire and +600 volts third rail. This was necessary because of steep gradients on NS lines. NS distinguished itself from its competitor with the high-quality decoration of its stations, the trains' extreme comfort and pretty lighting.
Nord-Sud did not become profitable and bankruptcy became unavoidable. By the end of 1930, the CMP bought Nord-Sud. Line A became Line 12 and line B Line 13. Line C was built and renamed line 14, that Line was reorganized in 1937 with Lines 8 and 10. This partial line is now the south part of line 13.
The last Nord-Sud train set was decommissioned on 15 May 1972.
Bienvenüe's project was nearly completed during the 1920s. Paris planned three new lines and extensions of most lines to the inner suburbs, despite the reluctance of Parisians. Bienvenüe's inner circular line having been abandoned, the already-built portion between Duroc and Odéon for the creation of a new east-west line that became line 10, extended west to Porte de Saint-Cloud and the inner suburbs of Boulogne.
The line C planned by Nord-Sud between Montparnasse station and Porte de Vanves was built as line 14 (different from present line 14). It extended north in encompassing the already-built portion between Invalides and Duroc, initially planned as part of the inner circular. The over-busy Belleville funicular tramway would be replaced by a new line, line 11, extended to Châtelet. Lines 10, 11 and 14 were thus the three new lines envisaged under this plan.
Most lines would be extended to the inner suburbs. The first to leave the city proper was line 9, extended in 1934 to Boulogne-Billancourt; more followed in the 1930s. World War II forced authorities to abandon projects such as the extension of Lines 4 or 12 to the northern suburbs. By 1949, eight lines had been extended: Line 1 to Neuilly-sur-Seine and Vincennes, Line 3 to Levallois-Perret, Line 5 to Pantin, Line 7 to Ivry-sur-Seine, Line 8 to Charenton, Line 9 to Boulogne-Billancourt, Line 11 to Les Lilas and Line 12 to Issy-les-Moulineaux.
World War II had a massive impact on the Métro. Services were limited and many stations closed. The risk of bombing meant the service between Place d'Italie and Étoile was transferred from Line 5 to line 6, so that most of the elevated portions of the Métro would be on Line 6. As a result, Lines 2 and 6 now form a circle. Most stations were too shallow to be used as bomb shelters. The French Resistance used the tunnels to conduct swift assaults throughout Paris.
It took a long time to recover after liberation in 1944. Many stations had not reopened by the 1960s and some closed for good. On 23 March 1948, the CMP (the underground) and the STCRP (bus and tramways) merged to form the RATP, which still operates the Métro.
The network grew saturated during the 1950s. Outdated technology limited the number of trains, which led the RATP to stop extending lines and concentrate on modernisation. The MP 51 prototype was built, testing both rubber-tyred metro and basic automatic driving on the voie navette. The first replacements of the older Sprague trains began with experimental articulated trains and then with mainstream rubber-tyred metro MP 55 and MP 59, some of the latter still in service (line 11). Thanks to newer trains and better signalling, trains ran more frequently.
The population boomed from 1950 to 1980. Car ownership became more common and suburbs grew further from the centre of Paris. The main railway stations, termini of the suburban rail lines, were overcrowded during rush hour. The short distance between metro stations slowed the network and made it unprofitable to build extensions. The solution in the 1960s was to revive a project abandoned at the end of the 19th century: joining suburban lines to new underground portions in the city centre as the Réseau express régional (regional express network; RER).
The RER plan initially included one east-west line and two north-south lines. RATP bought two unprofitable SNCF lines—the Ligne de Saint-Germain (westbound) and the Ligne de Vincennes (eastbound) with the intention of joining them and to serve multiple districts of central Paris with new underground stations. The new line created by this merger became line A. The Ligne de Sceaux, which served the southern suburbs and was bought by the CMP in the 1930s, would be extended north to merge with a line of the SNCF and reach the new Charles de Gaulle Airport in Roissy. This became line B. These new lines were inaugurated in 1977 and their wild success outperformed all the most optimistic forecasts to the extent that line A is the most used urban rail line in the world with nearly 300 million journeys a year.
Because of the enormous cost of these two lines, the third planned line was abandoned and the authorities decided that later developments of the RER network would be more cheaply developed by SNCF, alongside its continued management of other suburban lines. However, the RER developed by SNCF would never match the success of the RATP's two RER lines. In 1979, SNCF developed line C by joining the suburban lines of Gare d'Austerlitz and Gare d'Orsay, the latter being converted into a museum dedicated to impressionist paintings. During the 1980s, it developed line D, which was the second line planned by the initial RER schedule, but serving Châtelet instead of République to reduce costs. A huge Métro-RER hub was created at Châtelet-Les Halles, becoming one of the world's largest underground stations.
The same project of the 1960s also decided to merge lines 13 and 14 to create a quick connection between Saint-Lazare and Montparnasse as a new north-south line. Distances between stations on the lengthened line 13 differ from that on other lines in order to make it more "express" and hence to extend it farther in the suburbs. The new Line 13 was inaugurated on 9 November 1976.
In October 1998, Line 14 was inaugurated. It was the first fully new Métro line in 63 years. Known during its conception as Météor (Métro Est-Ouest Rapide), it is one of the two fully automatic lines within the network along with Line 1. It was the first with platform screen doors to prevent suicides and accidents. It was conceived with extensions to the suburbs in mind, similar to the extensions of the line 13 built during the 1970s. As a result, most of the stations are at least a kilometre apart. Like the RER lines designed by the RATP, nearly all stations offer connections with multiple Métro lines. The line runs between Saint-Lazare and Olympiades.
Lines 7 and 13 are the only two on the network to be split in branches. The RATP would like to get rid of those saturated branches in order to improve the network's efficiency. A project existed to attribute to line 14 one branch of each line, and to extend them further into the suburbs. This project was abandoned. In 1999, the RER Line E was inaugurated. Known during its conception as Eole (Est-Ouest Liaison Express), it is the fifth RER line. It terminates at Haussmann – Saint-Lazare, but a new project, financed by EPAD, the public authority managing the La Défense business district, should extend it west to La Défense – Grande Arche and the suburbs beyond.
In work started in 2007 and completed in November 2011, Line 1 was converted to driverless operation. The line was operated with a combination of driver-operated trains and driver-less trains until the delivery of the last of its driver-less MP 05 trains in February 2013. The same conversion is on-going for Line 4, with an expected completion date in 2022.
Several extensions to the suburbs opened in the last years. Line 8 was extended to Pointe du Lac in 2011, line 12 was extended to Aubervilliers in 2012 and line 4 was extended to Mairie de Montrouge in 2013.
Since the Métro was built to comprehensively serve the city inside its walls, the stations are very close: 548 metres apart on average, from 424 m on Line 4 to one kilometre on the newer line 14, meaning Paris is densely networked with stations. The surrounding suburbs are served by later line extensions, thus traffic from one suburb to another must pass through the city. The slow average speed effectively prohibits service to the greater Paris area.
The Métro is mostly underground (197 km or 122 mi of 214 km or 133 mi). Above-ground sections consist of viaducts within Paris (on Lines 1, 2, 5 and 6) and the suburban ends of Lines 1, 5, 8, and 13. The tunnels are relatively close to the surface due to the variable nature of the terrain, which complicates deep digging; exceptions include parts of Line 12 under the hill of Montmartre and line 2 under Ménilmontant. The tunnels follow the twisting lie of the streets. During construction in 1900 a minimum radius of curvature of just 75 metres was imposed, but even this low standard was not adhered to at Bastille and Notre-Dame-de-Lorette.
Like the New York City Subway and in contrast with the London Underground the Paris Métro mostly uses two-way tunnels. As in most French métro and tramway systems, trains drive on the right (SNCF trains run on the left track). The tracks are standard gauge (1.435 metres). Electric power is supplied by a third rail which carries 750 volts DC.
The width of the carriages, 2.4 metres, is narrower than that of newer French systems (such as the 2.9 m carriages in Lyon, one of the widest in Europe) and trains on Lines 1, 4 and 14 have capacities of 600-700 passengers; this is as compared with 2,600 on the Altéo MI 2N trains of RER A. The City of Paris deliberately chose the narrow size of the Metro tunnels to prevent the running of main-line trains; the city of Paris and the French state had historically poor relations. In contrast to many other historical metro systems (such as New York, Madrid, London, and Boston), all lines have tunnels and operate trains with the same dimensions. Five Paris Métro Lines (1, 4, 6, 11 and 14) run on a rubber tire system developed by the RATP in the 1950s, exported to the Montreal, Santiago and Mexico City metros.
The number of cars in each train varies line by line from three to six; most have five, and eight is possible on Line 14. Two lines, 7 and 13, have branches at the end, and trains serve every station on each line except when they are closed for renovations.
The first train leaves each terminus at 5:30 a.m. On some lines additional trains start from an intermediate station. The last train, often called the "balai" (broom) because it sweeps up remaining passengers, arrives at the terminus at 1:15 a.m., except on Fridays (since 7 December 2007), Saturdays and on nights before a holiday, when the service ends at 2:15 a.m.
Fares are sold at kiosks and at automated machines in the station foyer. Entrance to platforms is by automated gate, opened by smart cards and simple tickets. Gates return tickets for passengers to retain for the duration of the journey. There is normally no system to collect or check tickets at the end of the journey, and tickets can be inspected at any point. The exit from all stations is clearly marked as to the point beyond which possession of a ticket is no longer required. The standard ticket is ticket "t+". It is valid for a multi-transfer journey within one and a half hours from the first validation. It can be used on the Métro, buses and trams, and in zone 1 of the RER. It allows unlimited transfers between the same mode of transport (i.e. Métro to Métro, bus to bus and tram to tram), between bus and tram, and between metro and RER zone 1. When transferring between the Metro and the RER, it is necessary to retain the ticket. The RER requires a valid ticket for entry and exit, even for a transfer. It costs €1.90 or ten (a carnet) for €14.50 as of June 2017.
On 26 June 2012 it was announced that the Métro would get Wi-Fi in most stations. Access provided is free, with a premium paid alternative offer proposed for a faster internet connection.. As of October 2018, that has yet to be achieved.
The Métro has 214 kilometres (133 mi) of track and 302 stations, 62 connecting between lines. These figures do not include the RER network. The average distance between stations is 562 m (1,844 ft). Trains stop at all stations. Lines do not share tracks, even at interchange (transfer) stations.
Trains average 20 km/h (12.4 mph) with a maximum of 70 km/h (43 mph) on all but the automated driverless trains of line 14, which average 40 km/h (25 mph) and reach 80 km/h (50 mph). An average interstation trip takes 58 seconds. Trains travel on the right. The track is standard gauge but the loading gauge is smaller than the mainline SNCF network. Power is from a lateral third rail, 750 V DC, except on the rubber-tyred lines where the current is from guide bars.
The loading gauge is small compared to those of newer metro systems (but comparable to that of early European metros), with capacities of between about 560 and 720 passengers per train on Lines 1–14. Many other metro systems (such as those of New York and London) adopted expanded tunnel dimensions for their newer lines (or used tunnels of multiple sizes almost from the outset, in the case of Boston), at the cost of operating incompatible fleets of rolling stock. Paris built all lines to the same dimensions as its original lines. Before the introduction of rubber-tire lines in the 1950s, this common shared size theoretically allowed any Metro rolling stock to operate on any line, but in practice each line was assigned a regular roster of trains.
A feature is the use of rubber-tired trains on five lines: this technique was developed by RATP and entered service in 1951. The technology was exported to many networks around the world (including Montreal, Mexico City, and Santiago). Lines 1, 4, 6, 11 and 14 have special adaptations to accommodate rubber-tyred trains. Trains are composed of 3 to 6 cars depending on the line, the most common being 5 cars (Line 14 may have 8 cars in the future), but all trains on the same line have the same number of cars.
The Metro is designed to provide local, point-to-point service in Paris proper and service into the city from some close suburbs. Stations within Paris are very close together to form a grid structure, ensuring that every point in the city is close to a metro station (less than 500 metres or 1,600 feet), but this makes the service slow 20 km/h (12 mph), except on Line 14 where the stations are farther apart and the trains travel faster. The low speed virtually precludes feasible service to farther suburbs, which are serviced by the RER.
The Paris Métro runs mostly underground; surface sections include sections on viaduct in Paris (Lines 1, 2, 5 and 6) and at the surface in the suburbs (Lines 1, 5, 8 and 13). In most cases both tracks are laid in a single tunnel. Almost all lines follow roads, having been built by the cut-and-cover method near the surface (the earliest by hand). Line 1 follows the straight course of the Champs-Elysées and on other lines some stations (Liège, Commerce) have platforms that do not align: the street above is too narrow to fit both platforms opposite each other. Many lines have very sharp curves. The specifications established in 1900 required a very low minimum curve radius by railway standards, but even this was often not fully respected, for example near Bastille and Notre Dame de Lorette. Parts of the network are built at depth, in particular a section of Line 12 under Montmartre, the sections under the Seine, and all of Line 14.
Lines 7 and 13 have two terminal branches.
The rolling stock has steel-wheel (MF for matériel fer) and rubber-tyred trains (MP for matériel pneu). The different versions of each kind are specified by year of design. (C for Cab driver) and (CA for Cab Automatique)
|Line 1||1900||1992||25||16.6 km / 10.3 miles||692 m||213,921,408||La Défense|
Château de Vincennes
|Line 2||1900||1903||25||12.3 km / 7.7 miles||513 m||95,945,503||Porte Dauphine|
|Line 3||1904||1971||25||11.7 km / 7.3 miles||488 m||91,655,659||Pont de Levallois|
|Line 3bis||1971||1971||4||1.3 km / 0.8 miles||433 m||Porte des Lilas|
|Line 4||1908||2013||27||12.1 km / 6.6 miles||424 m||155,348,608||Porte de Clignancourt|
Mairie de Montrouge
|Line 5||1906||1985||22||14.6 km / 9.1 miles||695 m||92,778,870||Bobigny|
|Line 6||1909||1942||28||13.6 km / 8.5 miles||504 m||104,102,370||Charles de Gaulle–Étoile|
|Line 7||1910||1987||38||22.4 km / 13.9 miles||605 m||121,341,833||La Courneuve|
|Line 7bis||1967||1967||8||3.1 km / 1.9 miles||443 m||Louis Blanc|
|Line 8||1913||2011||38||23.4 km / 13.8 miles||614 m||92,041,135||Balard|
Pointe du Lac
|Line 9||1922||1937||37||19.6 km / 12.2 miles||544 m||119,885,878||Pont de Sèvres|
Mairie de Montreuil
|Line 10||1923||1981||23||11.7 km / 7.3 miles||532 m||40,411,341||Boulogne|
|Line 11||1935||1937||13||6.3 km / 3.9 miles||525 m||46,854,797||Châtelet|
Mairie des Lilas
|Line 12||1910||2012||29||13.9 km / 8.6 miles||515 m||81,409,421||Front Populaire|
|Line 13||1911||2008||32||24.3 km / 15.0 miles||776 m||114,821,166||Châtillon – Montrouge|
|Line 14||1998||2007||9||9 km / 5.6 miles||1,129 m||62,469,502||Saint-Lazare|
The typical station comprises two central tracks flanked by two 4‑m-wide platforms. About 50 stations, generally current or former termini, are exceptions; most have three tracks and two platforms (Porte d'Orléans), or two tracks and a central platform (Porte Dauphine). Some stations are single-track, either due to difficult terrain (Saint-Georges), a narrow street above (Liège) or track loops (Église d'Auteuil).
In general, stations were built near the surface by the cut-and-cover method, and are vaulted. Stations of the former Nord-Sud network (lines 12 and 13) have higher ceilings, due to the former presence of a ceiling catenary. There are exceptions to the rule of near-surface vaulting:
Several ghost stations are no longer served by trains. One of the three platforms at Porte des Lilas station is on a currently unused section of track, and is often used as a backdrop in films.
Concourses are decorated in Art Nouveau style defined at the Métro's opening in 1900. The spirit of this aesthetic has generally been respected in renovations.
Standard vaulted stations are lined by small white earthenware tiles, chosen because of the poor efficiency of early twentieth century electric lighting. From the outset walls have been used for advertising; posters in early stations are framed by coloured tiles with the name of the original operator (CMP or Nord Sud). Stations of the former Nord Sud (most of line 12 and parts of line 13) generally have more meticulous decoration. Station names are usually inscribed on metallic plaques in white letters on a blue background or in white tiles on a background of blue tiles.
The first renovations took place after the Second World War, when the installation of fluorescent lighting revealed the poor state of the original tiling. Three main styles of redecoration followed in succession.
A number of stations have original decorations to reflect the cultural significance of their locations. The first to receive this treatment was Louvre – Rivoli on line 1, which contains copies of the masterpieces on display at the museum. Other notable examples include Bastille (line 1), Saint-Germain-des-Prés (line 4), Cluny – La Sorbonne (line 10) and Arts et Métiers (line 11).
The original Art Nouveau entrances are iconic symbols of Paris, and 83 survive. Designed by Hector Guimard in a style that caused some surprise and controversy in 1900, there are two main variants:
Later stations and redecorations have brought increasingly simple styles to entrances.
In addition to the projects already under construction or currently being actively studied, there have also been proposals for:
The Métro has a cultural significance that goes well beyond the city of Paris. The name Métropolitan (or Métro) has become a generic name for subways and urban underground railroads.
The station entrance kiosks, designed by Hector Guimard, fostered the Art Nouveau building style (once widely known as "le style Métro"), though, some French commentators criticized the Guimard station kiosks, including their green color and sign lettering, as difficult to read.
The success of rubber-tired lines led to their export to metro systems around the world, starting with the Montreal Metro. The success of Montreal "did much to accelerate the international subway boom" of the 1960s/1970s and "assure the preeminence of the French in the process. Rubber-tired systems were adopted in Mexico City, Santiago, Lausanne, Turin, Singapore and other cities. The Japanese adopted rubber-tired metros (with their own technology and manufacturing firms) to systems in Kobe, Sapporo, and parts of Tokyo.
Charles de Gaulle–Étoile is a station of the Paris Métro and of Île-de-France's regional high-speed RER. It serves lines 1, 2, 6 of the Paris Métro and line A of the RER and lies on the boundary of the 8th, 16th, and 17th arrondissements of Paris. Originally called simply Étoile, after its location at Place de l'Étoile, it took on the additional name of President Charles de Gaulle from 1970.
The station serves as the western terminus of Paris Métro Line 6. The platforms are built beneath Place de l'Étoile, which is situated at the western end of the Avenue des Champs-Élysées. The Arc de Triomphe is located in the center of the Place. Lines 1 and 2 have two side platforms each, while the terminus on Line 6 is a single track with two platforms situated in a loop; passengers alight on the left platform and board on the right. Trains depart immediately from this station and make a longer stop at Kléber.Châtelet (Paris Métro)
Châtelet is a station of the Paris Métro and of Île-de-France's regional high-speed RER in the centre of medieval Paris and the 1st arrondissement. It serves lines line A, line B, and line D of the RER and serves lines 1, 4, 7, 11, and 14 of the Paris Métro and is the southern terminus of Paris Métro Line 11. The station is made up of two parts connected by a long corridor: Lines 7 and 11 under the Place du Châtelet and the Quai de Gesvre (site of the original medieval river port of Paris), next to the Seine; Lines 1, 4 and 14 towards Rue Saint-Denis and the Rue de Rivoli.
Châtelet is connected by another long underground corridor to the southern end of the RER station Châtelet–Les Halles, the northern end of which is again connected to the Métro station Les Halles. The distance from Line 7 at Châtelet to the RER lines at Châtelet–Les Halles is approximately 750 metres (2,460 ft). It is the ninth-busiest station on the Metro system.List of Paris Métro stations
The following is a list of all stations of the Paris Métro, sorted by lines.Montparnasse – Bienvenüe (Paris Métro)
Montparnasse – Bienvenüe (French pronunciation: [mɔ̃paʁnas bjɛ̃vəny]) is a station of the Paris Métro which is a transfer point between lines 4, 6, 12 and 13. It is the fourth busiest station on the Métro system and is located in Montparnasse at the intersection of the 6th, 14th and 15th arrondissements.Nation (Paris Métro and RER)
Nation is a station of the Paris Métro and of Île-de-France's regional high-speed RER. It serves lines 1, 2, 6 and 9 of the Paris Métro and line A of the RER. It takes its name from its location at the Place de la Nation.
The station serves as the eastern terminus of both Paris Métro Line 2 and Paris Métro Line 6. The line 1 station opened as part of the first stage of the line between Porte de Vincennes and Porte Maillot on 19 July 1900. The line 2 platforms opened when the line was extended from Bagnolet (now Alexandre Dumas) on 2 April 1903. The line 6 platforms opened when the line was extended from Place d'Italie to Nation on 1 March 1909. The line 9 platforms opened when the first stage of the line was extended from Richelieu – Drouot to Porte de Montreuil on 10 December 1933. On 12 December 1969, the RER station was opened as a new Paris terminus for the Ligne de Vincennes, replacing the old Gare de La Bastille. On 8 December 1977 the central section of line A opened from Nation to Auber.
It is named after the Place de la Nation, named in honour of Bastille Day in 1880. Previously it was called the Place du Trône, where guillotines were set up during the French Revolution.Paris Métro Line 1
Paris Métro Line 1 is one of the sixteen lines composing the Paris Métro (in Paris, France). It connects the La Défense – Grande Arche and Château de Vincennes stations. With a length of 16.5 km (10.3 mi), it constitutes an important "East-West" transportation route for the City of Paris. Excluding RER (French: Réseau Express Régional) lines, it is the most utilised subway line on the network with 213 million travellers in 2008 or 583,000 people per day on average.
Line 1 (as indicated by its name) was the first line to open, with its inaugural section opening in 1900. It is also the first line on the network to be converted from manually driven operation to fully automated operation. Conversion, which commenced in 2007 and was completed in 2011, included new rolling stock, the MP 05, and laying of platform edge doors in all stations. The first eight MP 05 trains (#s 501 through 508) went into passenger service on 3 November 2011, allowing the accelerated transfer of the existing MP 89CC stock to line 4. The conversion allowed Line 1 to operate as the system's second fully automated line, after Line 14.
A transition to fully automated services was done without major interruption to passenger traffic. The new MP 05 rolling stock was able to operate efficiently alongside the manually-driven MP 89 CC rolling stock until there were enough MP 05 to no longer facilitate the need of the MP 89. Full automation was achieved for evening services in May 2012, with an increase to weekend services by August 2012. As of 15 December 2012 Line 1 is 100% automated with only a few MP 89 CC trains being used during rush hours when needed. The remaining 5 trains will remain stored on Line 1 near the Fontenay workshops until a new garage for Line 4 is opened south of the new Mairie de Montrouge station in February 2013.Paris Métro Line 11
Paris Métro Line 11 is one of 16 Paris métro lines, France. It links Les Lilas in the North East of the city to Châtelet in the center of Paris. It is the shortest of the 14 metro lines having independent management (those of lines 3bis and 7bis are managed respectively by those of lines 3 and 7). It is the thirteenth busiest line on the network.
Unlike most Paris Métro lines, line 11 was not included in the original late 19th century scheme. It was built in the 1930s to replace the former Belleville funicular tramway. It was intended to create a more effective transportation system which could handle the increasing traffic on the route and to extend it to the center of Paris, at Châtelet.Paris Métro Line 13
Line 13 (French pronunciation: [liɲᵊ tʁez]) is one of the sixteen lines of the Paris Métro rapid transit system. It originated as Line B of the Nord-Sud Company before becoming Line 13 when the Nord-Sud was merged into the CMP in 1930. Line 13 was extended in 1976 to reach one end of Métro Line 14, which was then absorbed into it. (The number 14 was eventually reused for a new line in 1998.)
Line 13 was once planned to be replaced by a north-south RER line, but this was cancelled after the reorganisation of the Île-de-France region in 1965.
Today, Line 13 connects the western part of Paris to the suburbs of Saint-Denis, Asnières, and Gennevilliers in the north and to Châtillon and Montrouge in the south.Paris Métro Line 14
Paris Métro Line 14 is a line on the Paris Métro that connects the stations Saint Lazare and Olympiades on a north-west south-east diagonal across the centre of Paris. It was operated completely automatically from the beginning, and the very positive return of that experiment motivated the retrofitting of Line 1 for full automation. Before being put into commercial service Line 14 was known as project Météor, an acronym of MÉTro Est-Ouest Rapide.
The line is also occasionally used as a showcase for the expertise of the RATP, its operator, and Systra and Siemens Transportation Systems, constructors of the rolling stock and automated equipment respectively when they bid internationally to build metro systems.
In March 2014 the first of 18 MP 05 trains went into revenue service on Line 14. The STIF purchased these trains to improve service along the line and prepare the extension to the north in 2017. These trains will continue to enter service through 2015.The line is expected to be part of the Grand Paris Express rapid transit network and to be extended north and south for this project.Paris Métro Line 2
Line 2 is one of the sixteen lines of the Paris Métro rapid transit system in Paris, France. Situated almost entirely above the former city walls (boulevards extérieurs), it runs in a semi-circle in the north of Paris.
As its name suggests, Line 2 was the second line of the Métro to open, with the first section put into service in December 1900; it adopted its current configuration in April 1903, running between Porte Dauphine and Nation. There have been no changes in its service pattern since.
At 12.4 km (7.7 mi) in length, it is the seventh-busiest line of the system, with 92.1 million passengers in 2004. Slightly over 2 km (1.2 mi) of the line is built on an elevated viaduct with four aerial stations. In 1903, it was the location of the worst incident in the history of the Paris Métro, the fire at Couronnes.Paris Métro Line 3
Line 3 (French pronunciation: [liɲᵊ tʁwa]) is one of the sixteen lines of the Paris Métro rapid transit system in Paris, France. Connecting Pont de Levallois – Bécon station in the near western suburbs to Gallieni in the east, the location of Paris' international bus station. After opening as the third line in 1904, the line was the subject of a number of extensions, with a major restructuring occurring in the eastern section in 1971, with an extension to Gallieni and the conversion of the original terminal branch to Line 3bis.
With a length of 11.7 km (7 mi), Line 3 crosses Paris from west to east completely on the Right Bank, serving the residential areas of the 17th arrondissement, Saint-Lazare station, important stores and shopping centres, the area around the Place de l'Opéra, and the east of the city. In 2004, it carried 87.6 million passengers, making it the ninth busiest line of the Métro.Paris Métro Line 4
Line 4 (French pronunciation: [liɲᵊ katʁᵊ]) is one of the sixteen lines of the Paris Métro rapid transit system. Situated mostly within the boundaries of the City of Paris, it connects Porte de Clignancourt in the north and Mairie de Montrouge in the south, travelling across the heart of the city. Prior to 2013, when the southern terminus was changed from Porte d'Orléans to Mairie de Montrouge, the line was sometimes referred to as the Clignancourt – Orléans Line. At 12.1 km (7.5 mi) in length, it connects to all of the lines of the Métro apart from the 3bis and 7bis branch lines, as well as all of the RER express lines. Further, it is the second-busiest Métro line after Line 1, carrying over 154 million passengers in 2004.
Line 4 was the first line to connect the Right and Left Banks of Paris via an underwater tunnel, built between 1905 and 1907. Line 4 long ran the oldest cars in service on the system, the MP 59, which used rubber tyres to dissipate the braking power through resistance. Those trains were withdrawn from service during the course of 2011 and 2012 after 45 years (with some being in service for 50 years). They were replaced by the MP 89 CC stock from Line 1. (From fr:Ligne 4 du métro de Paris).
In the first decade of the 21st century, Line 4 was extended for the first time since its initial construction, into the southern suburbs of Montrouge. It now serves the new southern terminus of Mairie de Montrouge. Construction of the extension began in 2008 and it opened to passengers on March 23, 2013  . The line is now being retrofitted for full automation, with completion expected in the early 2020s.Paris Métro Line 5
Paris Métro Line 5 is one of the 16 metro lines built in Paris, France. It crosses the east of Paris from Bobigny to Place d'Italie. It is the eighth-busiest line on the network.Paris Métro Line 6
Line 6 is one of the sixteen lines of the Paris Métro rapid transit system. Following a semi-circular route around the southern half of the city above boulevards formed by the former wall of the 'Fermiers généraux' built between 1784 and 1791, it runs between Charles de Gaulle – Étoile in the west and Nation in the east.
Opened between 1900 and 1906 from Étoile to Place d'Italie, Line 6 was initially called 2 sud or circulaire sud ("southern circulator"), before being integrated for a long time with Line 5, while the section heading east to Nation opened in 1909. At that time, Line 6 took its current form.
13.6 km (8.5 mi) in length, of which 6.1 km (3.8 mi) are above ground, and equipped with rubber-tyred rolling stock since 1974, it is one of the most pleasant lines on the Métro. This is due in part due to is numerous views, sometimes exceptional, of many of Paris' most famous landmarks and monuments. With slightly more than 100 million riders in 2004, it is the sixth busiest line of the network.Paris Métro Line 7
Paris Métro Line 7 is one of sixteen lines of the Paris Métro system. Crossing the capital from its north-eastern to south-eastern sections via a moderately curved path, it links La Courneuve – 8 Mai 1945 in the north with Mairie d'Ivry and Villejuif – Louis Aragon in the south, while passing through important parts of central Paris.
Line 7 began operating in 1910 and, along with Line 13, is one of only two Métro lines that has a branch. Originally located in the northeast and splitting at Louis Blanc, it was transferred in 1967 to what is now Line 7bis. In 1982, a new branch was added in the southeast to Mairie d'Ivry, branching off at Maison Blanche. Line 7 has only steel rails.
At 18.6 km (12 mi), Line 7 is one of the longest in the Paris Métro network. In addition, it contains the most stations as well as being the third most-used line of the Métro, with 120.7 million riders in 2004.Paris Métro Line 7bis
Paris Métro Line 7bis is the second shortest line of the metro operating in Paris, France. It serves the 19th and 20th arrondissements in the North East of the city.Paris Métro Line 8
Paris Métro Line 8 is one of 16 lines of the Paris Métro. It connects the Balard station in southwestern Paris to Créteil – Pointe du Lac station in Créteil (a town southeast of the French capital), following a parabolic route on the right bank of the Seine. The last line of the original 1898 Paris Métro plan, which opened in December 1913, it was initially intended to link the Porte d'Auteuil and Opéra stations.
The line was substantially modified during the 1930s as line 10 took over the western section. The current route serves the southwestern part of the city, the Grands Boulevards and the Bois de Vincennes, ending in the southeastern inner suburbs through the cities (communes) of Charenton-le-Pont, Maisons-Alfort and Créteil (which the line reached in 1974 at the Créteil – Préfecture station, after several extensions). The underground line was the first to connect the prefecture of one of the new departments of Île-de-France.
The only Paris underground line to cross the Seine and its principal tributary (the Marne) in the air via a bridge between Charenton - Écoles and École Vétérinaire de Maisons-Alfort, it also crosses the Seine underground between Concorde and Invalides. With 89 million travellers in 2004, it is the network's eighth-busiest line.Paris Métro Line 9
Paris Métro Line 9 is one of 16 lines of the Paris Métro. The line links Pont de Sèvres in Boulogne in the west with Montreuil in the east via the city center of Paris, creating a parabola type shape to its route. It is the third busiest line on the network.
Line 9 interchanges with all of the 13 other main Métro lines, except for one (Line 12), not including 3bis and 7bis according to the RATP maps. There is, however, a connection to Line 12 via the underground passageway from Saint-Augustin to Saint-Lazare. This connection is not advertised as it is not normally useful unless one is traveling between the southern portion of the 8th arrondissement and Levallois-Perret.République (Paris Métro)
République is a station of the Paris Métro, serving lines 3, 5, 8, 9, and 11.
The station opened on 19 October 1904 as part of the first section of line 3 between Père Lachaise and Villiers. The line 5 platforms opened on 15 November 1907 with the extension of the line from Jacques Bonsergent (then called Lancry) to Gare du Nord. The line 8 platforms opened on 5 May 1931 with the extension of the line from Richelieu – Drouot to Porte de Charenton. The line 9 platforms opened on 10 December 1933 with the extension of the line from Richelieu-Drouot to Porte de Montreuil.
The line 11 platforms opened on 28 April 1935 with the opening of the line from Châtelet to Porte des Lilas.
It is named after the Place de la République, which in turn was named to commemorate the First, Second, and Third French Republics.Saint-Lazare (Paris Métro)
Saint-Lazare is a station on the Paris Métro serving lines 3, 12, 13 and 14 located on the border of the 8th and 9th arrondissements. It is the second busiest station of the metro system after Gare du Nord with 39 million passengers annually and is the western terminus of line 14.
The station offers connections to the following other stations:
Gare Saint-Lazare (SNCF)
Haussmann – Saint-Lazare on RER line E
Havre - Caumartin on lines 3 and 9
Saint-Augustin on line 9The station is named after the mainline railway station, which is situated in the Rue Saint-Lazare. It is in the commercial centre of Paris, near the major department stores.
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