The capital Bucharest has a new subway line connecting the west to the city center.
Bucharesters living in Drumul Taberei neighborhood can now take the subway to the city center as a new subway line, M5, has finally become operational. This should have happened long ago, given that construction works, that began in 2011, should have lasted only three years. President Klaus Iohannis, PM Ludovic Orban and Transport Minister Lucian Bode, inaugurated the new line.
According to President Iohannis, this is the greatest accomplishment in the field, since the fall of communism in 1989, and it significantly improves the life of Bucharesters. He has also said the new subway line was mostly built on EU funds and that Romania has huge such funds available, which make possible the quick development of infrastructure. People want infrastructure, mobility is increasingly important for every Romanian, and for that the Romanian Government will have to work hard, as will I, because we need a lot of transport infrastructure, President Iohannis said.
In his turn, PM Ludovic Orban promised that in the future other similar works would unfold at a faster pace and in a more careful manner. The new subway line serves a neighborhood of about 300 thousand people and is designed to transport 50 thousand travelers per hour per direction. It has 7 kilometers of double track, 10 stations and one depo. Waiting time in the station is 6 minutes at present. Ten trains out of the total 82 held by Bucharest metro company Metrorex operate on M5 and 13 new trains will be purchased. The Transport Minister has announced that M5 will be further extended by 6 stations. The contract for the design and construction of the metro section linking Otopeni International Airport to Bucharest, on subway line 6, will be signed next year, the minister explained.
On the other hand, Lucian Bode estimated that the railway line between Gara de Nord railway station in Bucharest and Otopeni Airport will become operational on December 12. Coming back to the Bucharest subway, it has a 80-km network distributed across five main lines and 63 stations. The idea of building a subway network first appeared in the beginning of the 20th century, but the first metro line was ready only in 1979. According to Metrorex, before the pandemic over 600 thousand people took the subway every day. Romania is in the first half of a hierarchy of European countries boasting subway networks, and has a tendency of going up. Unfortunately, this is not the case of the other types of transport, as Romania is among the EU countries with the poorest road infrastructure. (Translated by Elena Enache)