Yangon Circular Railway

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Mainline rail interchange Yangon Circular Railway
ရန်ကုန် မြို့ပတ် ရထား
OwnerMyanma Railways
Transit typeCommuter rail
Number of stations39
Daily ridership100,000-150,000
Began operation1954
Operator(s)Myanma Railways
Number of vehicles21
System length45.9 km (28.5 mi)
No. of tracks2
Track gauge1,000 mm (3 ft 3+38 in)
Average speed15.3 km/h (9.5 mph)
System map

Yangon Central
Pagoda Road
Pyay Road
Shan Road
Ahlone Road
Panhlaing Road
Thiri Myaing
Thamaing Myothit
Aung San Myo
to Pyay
Golf Course
Mingaladon Bazaar
Kyaukyedwin Yangon Tram
Myitta Nyunt
to Mandalay
Pazundaung Yangon Tram

Yangon Circular Railway (Burmese: ရန်ကုန် မြို့ပတ် ရထား [jàɰ̃ɡòʊɰ̃ mjo̰baʔ jətʰá]) is the local commuter rail network that serves the Yangon metropolitan area. Operated by Myanma Railways, the 45.9-kilometre (28.5 mi) 39-station loop system connects satellite towns and suburban areas to the city. Circa 2008–2010, the railway had about 200 coaches, had 20 daily runs, and sold 100,000 to 150,000 tickets daily.[1][2][3] The railway is heavily utilized by lower-income commuters, as it is (along with buses) the cheapest method of transportation in Yangon.[4][5]

The hours of service have been consistent over the years, from 3:45 am to 10:15 pm daily. In 2011, the cost of a ticket for a distance of 15 miles was two hundred kyats (~eighteen US cents), and that for over 15 miles was four hundred kyats (~37 US cents).[6] In the new currency (introduced in 2012) long distance tickets are 200 kyat (~20 US cents).[7]


Yangon Circular Railway was built during colonial times by the British.[8] The double track railway was built in 1954.[9]

In July 2011, the Ministry of Rail Transportation announced that it intended to privatize the Yangon Circular Railway, since the government-run system operates at a loss for the government, with monthly operating costs about 260 million kyats (US$325,000) and monthly revenues about 42 million kyats (US$52,500).[10] Ticket prices have been kept low because of ministry subsidies.[11]

In December 2012, Japan International Cooperation Agency began its collaboration with Yangon City Development Committee to develop a master plan for the Greater Yangon region, including the issue of public transport.[12] In 2015 air conditioned coaches were introduced with a slightly higher ticket cost,[13][14] but these did not last long, and by mid 2016 air conditioning was no longer available.[7]

Myanma Railways has had plans for a major upgrade for the Circle Line since 2012.[15] It is to be funded in large part by a $212 million loan from Japan’s development agency.[16] The hope is for all of the coaches and engines to be replaced by 2020, along with automation of the signaling systems and replacement of the aging tracks. The frequency of trains would be increased from the current two per hour.[16] In December, 2020, a contract was awarded to a consortium of Japan's Mitsubishi and Spain's CAF to provide 11 six-car diesel powered trains with the aim of reducing the travel time of the full loop from 170 to 110 minutes.[17]

Route and stations[edit]

The loop network consists of 39 stations, linking various parts of Yangon.[16] The entire circular trip takes approximately 3 hours.[7][16] Map from train is shown to the right, with approximate location of stations.

The loop begins from Yangon Central Railway Station to Mingaladon Railway Station near Yangon International Airport, via Insein to the west and Okkalapa in the east.

The major stations are as follows:[18]

Rolling stock[edit]


See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Inter-states and regions railroad tracks all heading to Nay Pyi Taw". BiWeekly Eleven. 3 (30). 2010-10-15. Archived from the original on 2011-07-14. Retrieved 2010-10-28.
  2. ^ Yeni (2008-01-30). "The Railway Bazaar". The Irrawaddy.
  3. ^ "Third Regional EST Forum: Presentation of Myanmar" (PDF). Singapore: Ministry of Transport, Myanmar. 17–19 March 2008.
  4. ^ Shwe Gaung, Juliet; Nay Lin Aung (1 August 2011). "Passengers hope privatisation brings better services". Myanmar Times. Retrieved 13 September 2013.
  5. ^ Moe Thida; Zhu Zhui; Zhou Xiaojing; Muhammad Halley Yudhistira; Jeff Volinski (March 2012). "Yangon Circular Railway Development Project" (PDF). raSPP Policy Research Paper E 1-2-001. University of Tokyo. Archived from the original (PDF) on 25 September 2013. Retrieved 13 September 2013.
  6. ^ ""မြို့ ပတ်ရထားလမ်းပိုင်းများနှင့် ပြည်တွင်းလမ်းပိုင်းများတွင် အသုံးပြုနိုင်ရန် ဂျပန်နိုင်ငံထုတ် RBE လူစီးရထားတွဲ ၁၃ တွဲ ရောက်ရှိ"" [13 Coaches from Japan Arrived for Yangon Circular Railway] (in Burmese). BiWeekly Eleven. 2011-01-04. Archived from the original on September 25, 2011.
  7. ^ a b c Cass, Emily (26 October 2016). "Riding the Yangon Circle Line Train: A True Myanmar Experience". Just Globetrotting. Archived from the original on 25 March 2017.
  8. ^ Codrington, Stephen (2005). Planet Geography. Solid Star Press. p. 568. ISBN 9780957981935.
  9. ^ Etherton, David; Terry Standley (May 1990). Human Settlements Sector Review: Union of Myanmar. United nations Centre for Human Settlements. p. 71. ISBN 9789211311280.
  10. ^ Win Ko Ko Latt; Su Hlaing Tun (1 August 2011). "Rail privatisation drive continues". Myanmar Times. Retrieved 13 September 2013.
  11. ^ "Yangon's rail network to be privatised". Myanmar Times. 25 July 2011. Retrieved 13 September 2013.
  12. ^ Mudditt, Jessica (25 March 2013). "Waiting for the train: upgrading the Yangon circle line". Myanmar Times. Retrieved 13 September 2013.
  13. ^ "5th RBE train launched with air-conditioned coaches". The Global New Light of Myanmar. 5 July 2015. Archived from the original on 19 December 2017.{{cite news}}: CS1 maint: unfit URL (link)
  14. ^ Thiha, Aye (19 November 2015). "As Changes Come to Myanmar, Train Upgrade Is Just the Ticket". Consult-Myanmar Co. Ltd. Archived from the original on 19 December 2017.
  15. ^ "Myanma Railways holds second public consultation meeting on upgrading Yangon circular rail line". Ministry of Information, Government of Myanmar. 23 September 2014. Archived from the original on 19 December 2017.
  16. ^ a b c d Dean, Adam (13 June 2017). "A Slow Ride Through (and Around) Yangon". New York Times. Retrieved 14 June 2017.
  17. ^ 2020-12-08T16:24:00. "Myanma Railways orders two train fleets". Railway Gazette International. Retrieved 2020-12-11.
  18. ^ "Yangon Circular Railways Schedule". Minami Tours. Archived from the original on 2008-07-23. Retrieved 2009-01-18.