Sat. May 25th, 2024

New £33bn railway that’s one of Europe’s biggest that will transport two million people

Jamie Roberts By Jamie Roberts May10,2024

The Grand Paris Express is a £33billion new railway which when complete will stretch more than 124 miles and transport as many as two million passengers a day. It will double the size of Paris’s Metro network and connect the suburbs of the French capital for the first time.

Grand Paris Express is reported to be Europe’s largest transport infrastructure scheme, involving the construction of four new lines, 68 new stations and an eight mile long viaduct.

The project aims to upgrade the city’s network, help cut emissions of planet-warming CO2 and link poorer parts of Paris in the east to the west, which is where much of the capital’s businesses are based.

Former French president Nicolas Sarkozy launched the project in 2007, with tunnelling work underway by 2018. An extension to the Paris Metro’s existing Line 14 is due to open in time for this summer’s Olympics.

The four new lines are expected to operate between 2025 and 2030.

Given the size of the project, it is perhaps unsurprising that it has seen various setbacks, including flooding of construction sites and delays caused by the late arrival of equipment and the Covid pandemic.

Twenty-three tunnel boring machines (TBMs) have been used during the project, compared to the 11 employed to build the Channel Tunnel. At their peak, TBMs were progressing 12 metres a day, according to

Paris’s existing Metro system involves travellers having to travel through the centre of the city and changing trains, but the Grand Paris Express means passengers can avoid doing that.

Line 15 will link southern and eastern suburbs with Saint-Denis to the north and the La Défense business district in the west.

The giant loop will circle the outskirts of the city so people don’t have to travel into the centre all the time.

Trains will be driverless and reach speeds of 37mph as they speed 30 to 40 metres below the city above.

Léo Belle, project designer and detailer for Bouygues, told “It is one of the largest urban projects in Europe. There has not been such an important transportation project in the city so far.”

Before the Grand Paris Express the French capital had a sprawling 497 mile (800km) system with 16 lines and five Réseau Express Régional commuter rail lines for the surrounding suburbs.

Jamie Roberts

By Jamie Roberts

Jamie is an award-winning investigative journalist with a focus on uncovering corruption and advocating for social justice. With over a decade of experience in the field, Jamie's work has been instrumental in bringing about positive change in various communities.

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One thought on “New £33bn railway that’s one of Europe’s biggest that will transport two million people”
  1. As a frequent traveler to Paris, I am thrilled about the Grand Paris Express project! The new £33billion railway will drastically improve transportation in the city, connecting suburbs and reducing emissions. It’s exciting to see such a massive infrastructure scheme in action, despite the setbacks. Can’t wait for the new lines to open!

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