Karachi Circular Railway

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Main article: Transport in Karachi
Karachi Circular Railway
کراچی سرکلر ریلوے
Karachi Circular Railway.jpg
Owner Karachi Urban Transport Corporation
Locale Metropolitan Karachi
Transit type Commuter rail
Number of lines 2
Number of stations 23 rail
Daily ridership 700,000
Headquarters Karachi, SN, Pakistan
Began operation 1969 (1969)
Host railroads Pakistan Railways
Number of vehicles 200 locomotives
System length 50 kilometres (31 mi)
Track gauge 5 ft 6 in (1,676 mm)
System map
Karachi Circular Railway
Jinnah International Airport
Star Gate
Drigh Colony
Drigh Road
Karsaz Halt
Naval Estate
Karachi Cantonment
Karachi City
Wazir Mansion
Shah Abdul Latif
Habib Bank
North Nazimabad
Aladin Park
Hill View

Karachi Circular Railway (KCR) (Urdu: کراچی سرکلر ریلوے ‎), a defunct inter-regional railway, is a proposed revival of an inter-regional public transit system in Karachi with aims to connect several industrial and commercial districts within the city to the outlying suburbs.[1] KCR will primarily serve the Metropolitan Karachi Area conurbation, with operations extending to several other communities. Pakistan's first such public system, KCR began regular passenger service in 1969 but was shutdown in 1999 due to gross mismanagement. In August 2012, JICA agreed to a $2.5 billion loan to the Karachi Urban Transport Corporation, which will oversee the rebuilding process.[2] The plans call for upgrades and rebuilding of the 50 kilometer long intra-city circular line which will operate 24 trains facilitating 700,000 commuters, making 3-minute stops at 23 stations.[3]


Karachi Circular Railway began operation in 1969 through Pakistan Railways with the aim of providing better transportation facilities to Karachi and the surrounding suburbs. The original KCR line extended from Drigh Road Station and ended at Karachi City Station carrying 6 million passengers annually.[4] The KCR was in instant success and made a significant profit in its first year of operation. During the 1970s and 1980s the KCR was at its peak with 104 daily trains, of which 80 trains ran on the main track while the remaining 24 ran on the loop line. During the 1990s, the private transporters of Karachi contracted KCR staff who became indulged in corruption.[citation needed] By 1994 the KCR was in incurring major losses and as a result the vast majority of trains were discontinued with only a few running on the Loop. In 1999 KCR operations were discontinued.[5] The result was instant gridlock on Karachi streets. In 2005, revival plans for the railway were initiated to fulfil the growing transportation needs of Karachi. The City District Government Karachi was already making plans for a revival and construction of a combined "Karachi Metro".[1]


The KCR will consist of a loop line from Karachi City to Drigh Road via Liaquatabad. 29 kilometres will be revived with an additional 21 kilometre dual track from Karachi City to Jinnah International Airport, allowing the KCR to connect to the Pakistan Railway main line. The KCR is expected to hold carry on average of 700,000 passengers on 246 trains daily when completed.[5]

Proposed Route for the new Karachi Circular Railway

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