According to Systra, the planner, as of 3/98:
Construction of subway lines 1 and 2 of four-line subway network is in progress. Fitting-out of the subway is in progress and supply of rolling stock was awarded to a Chinese company. Also under construction is a 42 km regional line linking urban line 2 to satellites cities.

More info as of 4/21/98:
Type Full Metro
Stations 54
Lines 3 (2 more under construction)
Length In Subway 42.5 km
Length Topside 60 km
Total Length 102.5 km
Year Built still under construction
Address Tehran Urban & Suburban Railway Company 
No. 37. Mir Emad St. 
Ostad Motahari Ave., 
Tehrean 15875, Iran 
Tel: 982-8740144-56
Comments Tehren's "Metro", about 60% underground, looks more like a commuter train as far as rolling stock goes. The cars are very similar to GO Transit's double decker commuter vehicles with a locomotive. I am not certain if these are temporary vehicles.

Parts I and II of the Tehran subway map.

Iran is also proposing to help with a new metro in Damascus, Syria.

The following information is courtesy Johnannes Hegel, who has done a fantastic job of providing information about this "mystery metro"

When I was in Tehran last time (in 1995) I could see the works proceeding.

There are two traditional heavy metro lines:

line 1 has 14,8 km of lenght and is north-south orientetd, entirely underground, 15 stations, with a ground level extention of 19,4 km, 12 stations in the south.

line 2 runs east to west, 19 km under ground and 1,9 km on ground level, 18 stations. Intersection of both lines is right in the center at Tupkhaneh square (official name Immam Khomeini square, but better known under the old name).

Both lines will be operated with EMU's with third rail feeding 750 DC.

There is a commuter railway line under construction, too. It will be operated by the same company. It starts from west terminal of line 2 and
goes some 45 km out of Tehran to Karaj, a 1 million inhabitants suburb. This line is fully on ground level, locomotive operated, 25 Kv monophase electricity, catenary feed. Cars on this line will be double deck.

What you see on the pictures on your site (and on the picture attached to this mail) is a funny one-day-a-year service with a diesel locomotive on line 1 south extension (to the Khomeiny mausoleum, on the anniversary of his death). I heard about this from an engineer from Tehran transportation board.  This branch is partially parallel to Tehran-Mashad national railway. The carriages are those of the future commuter railway to Karaj.

Here is a recent Reuters article on Tehran Metro:

Tehran looks to trains to ease traffic
By Barry May
TEHRAN, April 24 1998 (Reuters) - The tunnels are dug, the stations are
being built and the trains are on their way. But there is no sign yet that
Tehran's metro system will be ready to carry passengers to ease the city's
chronic traffic congestion and pollution any time soon. No track has been
laid, say engineers involved in the underground railway project.
Revolution, war and shortages of funds have delayed the project, designed
in the 1970s during the reign of the shah to ease congestion and reduce
pollution. Since then, Tehran's population has more than doubled from less
than three million to more than seven million, with at least a million more
commuting in each day from outlying areas. The first shipment of equipment
including six 88-tonne electric locomotives and 24 double-deck carriages
left Shanghai for Iran last week. The Chinese rolling stock will be used to
establish a commuter service between Tehran and the city of Karaj, 45 km
(28 miles) west of the capital.

A $550 million agreement with three Chinese companies to supply machinery
needed to complete the network of commuter services in and around Tehran is
the largest construction project in Iran. It is also among China's biggest
project overseas. It includes supplying power, signalling, ventilation and
maintenance equipment for two subway lines and a separate ground-level
track to the suburbs. The Chinese firms are China North Industries, China
National Technology Import and Export Corp, and China International Trust
and Investment Corp. China's Changchun Rolling Stocks Works will eventually
supply 218 passenger cars for the metro. But for now, only the yellow and
orange subway signs at strategic points around the city indicate that
Tehran's mass transit system is a little closer to becoming a reality after
a quarter century of intermittent work. Construction in north Tehran by
France following an ambitious study that suggested seven lines totalling
143 km was blocked, first by Iran's 1979 Islamic revolution and then the
1980-88 Iran-Iraq war. After the turmoil, Iran itself started boring two
lines under the city in 1986 -- one north-south, the other east-west. The
34 km north-south line was designed to have 22 stations. The 20 km
east-west line, 21. Both lines are entirely under ground. A separate
ground-level extension of the east-west route runs from Azadi (Freedom)
Square near Tehran's Mehrabad international airport to Karaj, a commuter
city of about one million people.

Between 10 to 12 percent of the 10.7 million passenger trips in Tehran each
day are expected to shift to the two lines, said Ali Atabak, a
transportation engineer involved in designing the lines. "There is a large
demand for public transport in Tehran but much depends on the fare
structure," he said. "Most construction in Iran has stopped because of
budget shortfalls, but the metro is going ahead," he added. The pollution
that hangs over Tehran and chokes the lungs of its people is measured on
electronic graphs around the city for all to see. Studies show that 70
percent of it is caused by traffic, much of it old and poorly maintained
cars. About 100,000 new cars were produced in Iran last year -- but few old
vehicles were taken off the roads. Two out of every five cars now in use
were made and licensed before the revolution. Besides the city's 24,000
licensed taxis, some 85,000 private vehicles are used as pirate taxis and
add to the congestion, according to an unofficial survey three months ago.
City officials have tried to ease congestion and speed up public transport
by imposing restrictions on a 22 square km (26 square yards) zone in
downtown Tehran where drivers must buy a permit to enter.


There has been a set-back in May when the first batch of locomotives was
destroyed at sea, when the Chinese ship carrying them collided with another vessel. :-(

You can get more information on Tehran Metro on my Homepage on Iranian Railways at

But most detailed tecnical information is still on

P.S second picture is the Tehran Metro label, with a farsi written 'M' for metro.


More info courtesy of Johnnanes Heger, February 1998:

tehran, jan. 31, irna -- the second stage of tehran-karaj metro line
began its tentative operation sunday, tehran urban railway official
mr. naqshi said on sunday.
    naqshi said the test trips will last for 10 days in which the
trains would be modified to accord with the standards of the
international union for public transport.
    he said after the test trips, the metro line will start service
for three hours everyday at e2 station, taking passengers from
sadeqieh square to malard (karaj) and vice versa in every 25 minutes.
    he said the metro line will give service to passengers seven
hours a day by the end of the second phase and 18 hours a day by the
end of its the third phase.
    he said every train has 1,400 seats for passengers. each ticket
costs rls 1,500

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