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‹See Tfm›     RER D
RER.svg Paris rer D jms.svg
Stations 59
Ridership 145,000,000 journeys per year
Opening 1987
(last extension in 1996)
Rolling stock Z 5300, Z 5600
Z 20500
Line length 190 km (120 mi)
Track gauge 1,435 mm (4 ft 8 12 in)
Route map
RER D.svg

Geographically accurate path of the RER D

The RER D is one of the five lines in the RER rapid transit system serving Paris, France.

The line officially runs from the northern terminus Orry-la-Ville – Coye (D1) to the southern terminuses Melun (D2) and Malesherbes (D4). In reality, some trains continue north to Creil except during rush hours, and the link between Juvisy-sur-Orge and Melun via Corbeil-Essonnes is operated by RER D.

Due to its high rate of incidents and social disturbances, RER D line is colloquially known as "RER poubelle" (Trash).[1]

  • First inauguration : 27 September 1987
  • Length : 190 km (120 mi)
  • Number of stops : 59 (including Corbeil-Essonnes Melun branch, Chantilly and Creil)

Line D links the Gare du Nord with the Gare de Lyon via Châtelet – Les-Halles. The section north of the Gare du Nord opened in the late 1980s; a dedicated tunnel opened in 1995 to connect it to the SNCF network south of the Gare de Lyon, part of which was transferred to the RER.


  • 27 September 1987: Inauguration of Line D. Operated Villiers-le-Bel – Gare du Nord – Châtelet-Les Halles, 19 km, using the Line B Tunnel to Châtelet – Les Halles
  • 1988: Extension north towards Goussainville.
  • September 1990: Extension north towards Orry-la-Ville.
  • September 1995: Inauguration of "Interconnexion Sud-Est". The line is extended from Châtelet to Melun and La Ferté-Alais then Malesherbes (the following year, 1996) in the south of Paris.
  • January 25th, 1998: New station, St-Denis – Stade de France, opened. Located between Gare du Nord and St-Denis.
  • January 29th, 2007: First renovated Z 20500 stock in service.
  • March 19th, 2008: Start of the "D Maintenant" programme by Guillaume Pepy, the president of SNCF.
  • December 14th, 2008: Reduced "Interconnexion Nord-Sud" service, with 8 interconnected trains per hour.
  • Late 2009: End of the "D Maintenant" programme.
  • December 7th, 2011: Start of studies for the doubling of the Châtelet-Gare du Nord tunnel.
  • December 15th, 2013: New station, Créteil-Pompadour, opened.



Initially, the "métro régional", the ancestor to the RER, was conceived of three lines, one going from east to west (the future RER A), a new line built from existing lines (the future RER C), the extension of the Ligne de Sceaux and with its interconnection with an SNCF line, along with a supplementary interconnected north-south (the future RER D). The operation of renovating "les Halles" gave the occasion to build Châtelet-Les Halles with a cut-and-cover method, in order to reduce costs.[2]

Initially, the new RER D was meant to share with the RER A between Paris-Gare de Lyon and Châtelet-Les Halles. But, RATP, the company who runs the RER A, objected to such an operation as the number of passengers using the RER A was growing and required running extra trains on the RER A. It was decided that instead, each lines must have its own platforms, in which the RER A at the Gare de Lyon has its tracks at lower level of the underground station, with the future RER D on the upper level. The RER D tracks at Paris-Gare de Lyon have four tracks and being above the RER A tracks, allowed "platform to platform" transfers vertically, a Japanese invention.[3]


On September 27th, 1987, the RER D was officially created, by extending existing suburban trains from Villiers-le-Bel to Gare du Nord, towards Châtelet-Les Halles. Initially 19 km (12 mi) long, it was equipped with bi-current Z 8800 stock trains, while newer Z 20500 stock trains were still being built. At Châtelet-Les Halles station, the RER D terminated on the three central tracks, already built from the conception of Châtelet-Les Halles station.[4]

In 1988, existing suburban trains terminating at Goussainville now integrate with the RER D.[5] On the same year, the first bi-mode Z 20500 trains are in service. They were initially composed of 4 cars until the north-south interconnection was inaugurated in 1995, when they became 5-car trains (where they're coupled to make 10-car trains).

In September 1990, the RER D again extended north to Orry-la-Ville. At the same time, one-man operation started on the RER D.[6] Finally, on September 11th, 1995, the north-south interconnection of the RER D was put into service by building a dedicated 2.5 km (1.6 mi) long tunnel between Châtelet-Les Halles and Paris-Gare de Lyon.[7]

In 1996, the RER D was extended south from La Ferté-Alais to Malesherbes.[8] On January 15th, 1998 for the 1998 FIFA World Cup, St-Denis – Stade de France station opened, in order to serve the Stade de France.

Protesters at Yerres on October 17th, 2009

The RER D is known in Paris as one of the most unpunctual railway line in the RER network.[9] This unpunctuality is especially due to the shared tunnel between the RER B and RER D between Châtelet - Les Halles station and Gare du Nord station, where even a small delay of a few seconds on either lines causes catastrophic delays and trains to be cancelled, to the point that regular commuters of the RER D are used to trains being cancelled or late daily.

List of RER D stations[edit]

Geographically accurate diagram of the RER D

See also[edit]


  1. ^ From French version: "Des incident fréquents: un RER 'poubelle'?" ("Frequent incidents: 'RER Trash'?").
  2. ^ Jean Robert, Notre métro, p. 386
  3. ^ Jean Robert, Notre métro, p. 386
  4. ^
  5. ^ Bernard Collardey, Les Trains de banlieue, tome II, p. 227
  6. ^ Les Trains de Banlieue. Tome II. De 1938 à 1999, op. cit., p. 227.
  7. ^ INA - Report on the new RER D.[1]
  8. ^
  9. ^ | French TV report on the unreliability of the RER D

External links[edit]