Mexico City Metro
|Mexico City Metro|
Older line 2 train leaving General Anaya.
|Transit type||Rapid transit|
|Number of lines||12|
|Number of stations||195|
|Daily ridership||4.08 million (average)|
|Annual ridership||1.49 billion (2011)|
|Began operation||4 September, 1969|
|Operator(s)||Sistema de Transporte Colectivo (STC)|
|System length||201.09 km (124.95 mi)|
|Track gauge||1,435 mm (4 ft 8 1⁄2 in) (standard gauge) with roll ways along track (Rubber-tyred metro) (10 lines) and 1,435 mm (4 ft 8 1⁄2 in) (2 lines)|
The Mexico City Metro (in Spanish, Metro de la Ciudad de México), officially called Sistema de Transporte Colectivo, often shortened to STC, is a metro system that serves the metropolitan area of Mexico City, including some municipalities in Mexico State. It is the second largest metro system in North America after the New York City Subway. In 2011 the system served 1.487 billion passengers, placing it as the ninth highest ridership in the world.
The first STC Metro line had 16 stations, and opened to the public in 4 September 1969. The system has expanded since then in a series of fits and starts. As of 2013, the system comprises twelve lines and 201.09 kilometres (124.95 mi) of passenger track. Ten of the lines are rubber-tyred; instead of traditional steel wheels, these use pneumatic traction, which are quieter and cope better with Mexico City's unstable soils.
The STC Metro system has 195 stations, 24 of which serve two or more lines (correspondencias or transfer stations). It has 115 underground stations (the deepest of which are 35 metres (115 ft) below street level); 55 surface stations and 25 elevated stations. All lines operate from 5 am until midnight.
At the end of 2007, the Federal District government announced the construction of the most recent STC Metro line: line 12, which would run towards the southeastern part of the city, connecting with lines 7, 3, 2 and 8. This line was opened on 30 October, 2012.
By the second half of the twentieth century, Mexico City had serious public transport issues, with congested main roads and highways, especially in the downtown zone, where 40 percent of the daily trips in the city were concentrated. 65 of the 91 lines of bus and electric transport served this area. With four thousand units in addition to 150,000 personal automobiles peak hours, the average speed was less than walking pace.
The principal promoter of the construction of the Mexico City Metro was engineer Bernardo Quintana, who was in charge of the construction company Ingenieros Civiles y Asociados (Spanish for Civil Engineers and Associates). He carried out a series of studies that resulted in a draft plan which would ultimately lead to the construction of the Mexico City Metro. This plan was shown to different authorities of Mexico City but it was not made official until 29 April, 1967, when the Government Gazette ("Diario Oficial de la Federación") published the presidential decree that created a public decentralized organism, the Sistema de Transporte Colectivo, with the proposal to build, operate and run a rapid transit of subterranean course for the public transport of Mexico City.
On 19 June, 1967, in the crossroad of Chapultepec Avenue with Bucareli Street, the inauguration ceremony for the Mexico City Metro took place. Two years later, on 4 September, 1969, an orange train made the inaugural trip between stations Zaragoza and Insurgentes, thus beginning uninterrupted daily operation up to today.
First stage (1967 - 1972) 
The first stage of construction comprised the construction and inauguration of lines 1, 2 and 3. This stage involved engineers, geologists, mechanics, civil engineers, chemists, hydraulic and sanitation workers, electricians, archaeologists, and biologists; specialists in ventilation, statistics, computation, and in traffic and transit; accountants, economists, lawyers, workers and laborers. Between 1,200 and 4,000 specialists and 48,000 workers participated, building at least one kilometer of track per month, the fastest rate of construction ever for a subway.
By the end of the first stage, namely on 10 June, 1972, the STC Metro had 48 stations and a total length of 41.41 kilometres (25.73 mi): line 1 ran from Observatorio to Zaragoza, line 2 from Tacuba into the southwestern Tasqueña and line 3 from Tlatelolco to Hospital General in the south, providing quick access to the General Hospital of Mexico.
Second stage (1977 - 1982) 
No further progress was reached during President Luis Echeverría's government, but during José López Portillo's administration, a second stage began; the Comisión Ejecutiva del Metro (Executive Technical Commission of Mexico City Metro) was created in order to be in charge of expanding the STC Metro within the metropolitan area of Mexico City.
Works began with the expansion of line 3 towards the north from Tlatelolco to La Raza in 1978 and to the current terminal Indios Verdes in 1979, and towards the south from Hospital General to Centro Médico in 1980 and to Zapata months later. Construction of lines 4 and 5 was begun and completed on 26 May and 30 August, 1982 respectively; the first one from Martín Carrera to Santa Anita and the latter from Politécnico to Pantitlán. Line 4 was the first STC Metro line built as an elevated track, owing to the lower density of big buildings.
Third stage (1983 - 1985) 
This construction stage took place from the beginning of 1983 through the end of 1985. Lines 1, 2 and 3 were expanded to their current lengths, and new lines 6 and 7 were built. The length of the network was increased by 35.29 kilometres (21.93 mi) and the number of stations to 105.
Line 3 route was expanded from Zapata station to Universidad station on 30 August, 1983. Line 1 was expanded from Zaragoza to current terminal Pantitlán, and line 2 from Tacuba to current terminal Cuatro Caminos. These latter were both inaugurated on 22 August, 1984.
Line 6 first route ran from El Rosario to Instituto del Petróleo; line 7 was opened from Tacuba to Barranca del Muerto and runs on the bottom of the Sierra de las Cruces mountain range that surrounds the Valley of Mexico by its west side, outside of the ancient lake zone; this made possible line 7 to be built as a deep-tunnel.
On the morning of 19 September, 1985, an 8.1 Richter magnitude earthquake struck Mexico City. Many buildings as well as streets were left with major damage making the transportation on the ground difficult, but the STC Metro was not damaged because a rectangular structure had been used instead of arches, making it resistant to earthquakes, thus proving to be a safe means of transportation in a time of crisis.
Fourth stage (1985 - 1987) 
Fourth stage saw the completion of line 6 from Instituto del Petróleo to eastern terminal Martín Carrera and line 7 to the north from Tacuba to El Rosario. Line 9 was the only new line built during this stage; it originally ran from Pantitlán to Centro Médico, and its expansion to Tacubaya was completed on 29 August, 1988. For line 9, a circular deep-tunnel and an elevated track were used.
Fifth stage (1988 - 1994) 
For the first time, a service line of the Mexico City Metro ran into the State of Mexico: planned as one of more líneas alimentadoras(feeding lines to be named by letters, instead of numbers), line A was fully operational by its first inauguration on 12 August, 1991; it runs from Pantitlán to La Paz, located in the municipality of of the same name. This line was built almost entirely above ground, and to reduce the cost of maintenance, steel railway tracks and overhead lines were used instead of pneumatic traction, promoting the name metro férreo (steel-rail metro) as opposed to the previous eight lines that used pneumatic traction.
The draft for line 8 planned a correspondencia (transfer station) in Zócalo, namely the exact center of the city, but it was cancelled due to possible damage to the colonial buildings and the Aztec ruins, so it was replanned and now it runs from Garibaldi, which is still downtown, to Constitución de 1917 in the southeast of the city. The construction of line 8 began in 1988 and was completed in 1994.
With this, the length of the network increased 37.1 kilometres (23.1 mi), adding two lines and 29 more stations, giving the metro network at that point a total of 178.1 kilometres (110.7 mi), 154 stations and 10 lines.
Sixth stage (1994 - 2000) 
Assessment for line B began in late 1993. Line B was intended as a second línea alimentadora for northeastern municipalities in the State of Mexico, but, unlike line A, it used pneumatic traction. Construction of the subterranean track between Buenavista (named after the old Buenavista train station) and Garibaldi began in October 1994. Line B was opened to public in two stages: from Buenavista to Villa de Aragón on 15 December, 1999, and from Villa de Aragón to Ciudad Azteca on 30 November, 2000.
Seventh stage (2008 - 2014) 
Stage seven for a new STC Metro line started in 2008, although previous surveys and assessments had been made as early as 2000. Line 12 first service stage was planned for completion in late 2009 with the creation of track connecting Axomulco, a planned new transfer station for line 8 (between Escuadrón 201 and Atlalilco) to Tláhuac. The second stage, connecting Mixcoac to Tláhuac was to be completed in 2010.
Construction of line 12 started in 2008, assuring it would be opened by 2011. Nevertheless, completion was delayed to 2012. Free test rides were offered to public in some stations, and the line was fully operational on 30 October, 2012. With minor changes, line 12 runs from Mixcoac to Tláhuac, serving southern Mexico City for the first time. With 24.31 kilometres (15.11 mi), it is the longest line in the system.
Line 12 differs from previous lines in several aspects: no hawkers are allowed, neither inside the train nor inside the stations; it is the first numbered-line to use steel railway tracks; one must have a Tarjeta DF smart card to access any station, since Metro tickets are no longer accepted.
On the book Los hombres del Metro, the original planning of line 12 is described; although it departs from Mixcoac, Atlalilco and Constitución de 1917 stations of line 8 were to be part of line 12. The same map shows that line 8 would reach Villa Coapa area and that it would not have a terminal at Garibaldi, but at Indios Verdes, linking with line 3. In addition, the book shows that line 7 would finish at San Jerónimo. None of this plans have been confirmed by the Mexico City government. However, mayor Miguel Ángel Mancera has announced the construction of at least two more stations for line 12: Valentín Campa Salazar (or Benvenuto Cellini) and Olivar del Conde, both west of Mixcoac; these are to be built by 2014 
Lines and stations 
Each line offers one service only, and to each line a number (letter if feeding line) and a colour are assigned. Every assigned colour is present on square-shaped station logos, system maps and street signs, and neither colour nor numbers have been changed. Line B is the only exception to colour assignement, as green (upper half) and grey (lower half) are used, producing thus bicolour logos and signs. Grey only may be used to avoid confusion with line 8, which uses a similar green.
Each station is identified by a minimalist logo related to the name of the station or the area around it. This is because, at the time of the first line's opening, the illiteracy rate was extremely high, and people found it easier to guide themselves with a system based on colors and visual signs. The design of the icons and the typography are a creation of Lance Wyman, who also designed the logotype for the 1968 Summer Olympic Games at Mexico City. The logos are not assigned at random; rather, they are designated by considering the surrounding area, such as:
- The reference places that are located around the stations (e.g., the logo for Salto del Agua fountain depicts a fountain).
- The topology of an area (e.g., Coyoacán—in Nahuatl "place of coyotes"—depicts a coyote).
- The history of the place (e.g., Juárez, named after President Benito Juárez, depicts his silhouette).
The logos' background colors reflect those of the line the station serves. Stations serving two or more lines show the respective colors of each line in diagonal stripes, as in Salto del Agua. This system was adopted for the Guadalajara and Monterrey metros, and recently for the 2005, 2009 and 2011 Mexico City Metrobús. Although logos are no longer necessary due to literacy being now widespread, their usage remained.
|Line||Northern/Western terminal||Southern/Eastern terminal||Total stations||Passenger track||Inauguration|
|Line 1||Observatorio (W)||Pantitlán (E)||20||16.65 kilometres (10.35 mi)||4 September 1969|
|Line 2||Cuatro Caminos (N)||Tasqueña (S)||24||20.71 kilometres (12.87 mi)||1 August 1970|
|Line 3||Indios Verdes (N)||Universidad (S)||21||21.28 kilometres (13.22 mi)||20 November 1970|
|Line 4||Martín Carrera (N)||Santa Anita (S)||10||9.36 kilometres (5.82 mi)||29 August 1981|
|Line 5||Politécnico (N)||Pantitlán (S)||13||14.44 kilometres (8.97 mi)||19 December 1981|
|Line 6||El Rosario (W)||Martín Carrera (E)||11||11.43 kilometres (7.10 mi)||21 December 1983|
|Line 7||El Rosario (N)||Barranca del Muerto (S)||14||17.01 kilometres (10.57 mi)||20 December 1984|
|Line 8||Garibaldi/Lagunilla (N)||Constitución de 1917 (S)||19||17.68 kilometres (10.99 mi)||20 July 1994|
|Line 9||Tacubaya (W)||Pantitlán (E)||12||13.03 kilometres (8.10 mi)||26 August 1987|
|Line A||Pantitlán (W)||La Paz (E)||10||14.89 kilometres (9.25 mi)||12 August 1991|
|Line B||Ciudad Azteca (N)||Buenavista (S)||21||20.28 kilometres (12.60 mi)||15 December 1999|
|Line 12||Mixcoac (W)||Tláhuac (E)||20||24.32 kilometres (15.11 mi)||30 October 2012|
- Colours according to the official STC icons.
Transfers to other systems 
The Mexico City Metro offers in and out-street transfers to three major rapid transit systems: the Mexico City Metrobús bus rapid transit system, the Mexico City Light Rail and the Ferrocarril Suburbano (FSZMVM) commuter rail. None of these is part of the Sistema de Transporte Colectivo network and an extra fare must be paid for access.
Metrobús line 1 was inaugurated on 2005. According to the 1985 STC Metro Master Plan, Metrobús line 1 roughly follows the route planned for STC Metro line 15 by 2010, which was never built. Every transfer is out-of-station, but the same smart card may be used for payment. All five lines (line 5 to be built during 2013) offer connection to at least one STC Metro station. STC Metro stations that connect to Metrobús lines include Indios Verdes, La Raza, Chilpancingo, Balderas, Etiopía/Plaza de la Transparencia, Insurgentes Sur and others.
The sole light rail line running from Tasqueña to Xochimilco is operated by the Servicio de Transportes Eléctricos and is better known as Tren Ligero. Line 2 terminal Tasqueña offers an in-station transfer, but an extra ticket must be purchased.
In 2008, the Ferrocarril Suburbano commuter rail, commonly known as Suburbano, was inaugurated with a sole line running from Cuatitlán to Buenavista as of 2013. STC Metro offers two in-station transfers: line B terminal Buenavista to the Suburbano terminal of the same name, and line 6 station Ferrería/Arena Ciudad de México into Suburbano station Fortuna. An extra fare must be paid, and a Ferrocarril Suburbano smart card is required for access.
Fares and pay systems 
Until 2009, a STC Metro ticket cost MXN $2.00 (€ 0.10, or US$ 0.15 in 2009); one ticket allowed unlimited distance travel and transfer at any given time, making Mexico City Metro one of the cheapest rail systems in the world. Only line A's transfer in Pantitlán requires a second payment. In January 2010 the price rose to MXN $3.00 (€ 0.15, or US$ 0.24), a fare that remains today; a 2009 survey showed that 93% of citizens approved of the increase, while some said they would be willing to pay even more if needed  Mexico City Metro offers free service to the elderly, the physically impaired, and children under the age of 5 (accompanied by an adult).
Tickets can be purchased at booths. STC Metro rechargeable cards were first available for an initial cost of MXN $10.00. The card would be recharged at the ticket counter in any station (or at machines in some Metro stations) to a maximum of MXN $620.00 (around € 36.75, or US$ 50.00 in 2010) for 310 trips.
In an attempt to modernize public transport, the Mexico City government implemented the use of a single smart card called Tarjeta DF (roughly Mexico City card) as a payment method for both STC Metro and Metrobús, though they are managed by different organisations. This smart card is to be used with other means of transportation such as the Mexico City Light Rail and Trolleybus. Both STC Metro and Metrobús original smart cards will still be useful for the system for which they were acquired.
Rolling stock 
As of April 2012, 14 types of standard gauge rolling stock totalling a number of 355 trains running in 6-or 9-car formation are currently in use on the Mexico City Metro. Four manufacturers have provided rolling stock for the Mexico City Metro, namely the French Alsthom, Canadian Bombardier, Spanish CAF and Mexican Concarril (Concarril) (now Bombardier Transportation Mexico, in some train types with the help of Alsthom and/or Bombardier).
The maximum design speed limit is 80 km/h (50 mph) (average speed 35.5 km/h or 22.1 mph) for rubber-tyred rolling stock and 100 km/h (62 mph) (average speed 42.5 km/h or 26.4 mph) for steel-wheeled rolling stock. Unlike the rolling stock of other metro systems in the world, the trains do not utilise air-conditioning; instead forced-air ventilation is employed in all trains and the top portion of windows can be opened so that passenger comfort is ensured by the combination of these two types of ventilation. Like the rolling stock used in the Paris Métro, the numbering of the Mexico City Metro's rolling stock are specified by year of design (not year of first use).
In chronological order, the types of rubber-tyred rolling stock are: MP-68, NM-73A, NM-73B, NM-73C, NM-79, MP-82, NC-82, NM-83A, NM-83B, NE-92 and NM-02; and the types of steel-wheeled roling stock are: FM-86, FM-95A, FE-07 and FE-10.
See also 
- List of Mexico City metro stations
- Mexico City metro lines
- Ferrocarril Suburbano de la Zona Metropolitana del Valle de México
- List of rapid transit systems
- Metro systems by annual passenger rides
- Rubber-tyred metro
- Servicio de Transportes Eléctricos
- Transportation in Mexico City
- Mexico City Light Rail
- First Building Stage (in Spanish). Sistema de Transporte Colectivo.
- "La Jornada: Ponen Valentín Campa a tren del Metro; nueva estación también llevará su nombre". Retrieved 28 February 2013.
- "El Sol de México: Anuncia Mancera la próxima ampliación de la Línea 12 del Metro". Retrieved 28 February 2013.
- "El Universal: Plantean alargar la L-12 del Metro hasta Alta Tensión". Retrieved 28 February 2013.
- Schwandl, Robert (2007). "UrbanRail.Net > Central America > Mexico > Ciudad de Mexico Metro". Retrieved 16 August 2011.
- "Aprueban usuarios incremento a la tarifa del Metro (Spanish)". Retrieved 28 February 2013.
- "STC: Tarjeta Recargable (Spanish)".
- "STC: Nueva Tarjeta del Distrito Federal (Spanish)".
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to: Mexico City subway|
- Mexico City Metro (official) (Spanish)