Mexico City

* Planned

Mexico City
metro, light rail


The subway system in this ancient city of the Aztecs is one of the world's largest. Construction began in 1967, with engineers fighting history and geology to carve it out. They faced the challenge of having to design a system that would hold up in the soft subsoil, which was once the bed of a vast lake. They also had to protect the system against frequent earthquakes and draw a map that took into account the subterranean architecture of the city's many ruins. Finally, in 1969, the first line opened for business.

There are currently 13 lines with 227 km and 215 stations. All lines are rubber tired except for Line A. 

Mexico City's metro is known to be the cheapest subway ride in the world, though some still respect it in the morning.

Because of it's high crime, Mexico City subway officials have begun distributing free books on the subway so as to keep the more intellectual criminals at bay. While the number of pocket pickers may not decrease, it is hoped that the existing ones will become more educated, better,  and smarter thieves.

Men and women are required to ride in separate during rush hour to prevent sexual harassment, so please remember to practice your frottage skills elsewhere.

Finally, this little bit of maize for your subterranean burrito:
A plan for a 31 km, 18 station Sky Train, or ECOTREN, was cancelled by the Fox administration in order to build more roads and purchase new metro rolling stock. The line would have included two underground stations, including one at Line 8's terminus in Garibaldi,  and was to utilize rolling stock like that of Vancouver's Sky Train. Despite outcries by wealthy homeowners in neighborhoods it would have traversed, what would have been "Line 11", once due to open in 1996, is still part of the city's master metro plan.

Rush Hour
Photos from Robert Schwandl
Servicios Publicos
Mexico City Subway system
The Metro and Tren Ligero in Mexico City
Marco Monroy's Mexico Metro Site
Mexico City subway car cutout
Brief guide to the metro
Line 12 photos from

Light Rail

Transportes Eléctricos del Distrito Federal, a separate agency, also runs an 18 station, 26 km light rail line, or tren ligero. This line is all that is left of a once massive and proud tramway network, killed off by Cortes and the rubber companies in the late 1400s. You can catch the tren ligero at the end of subway Line 2 at Tasqueña. Be sure to check out the floating gardens in Xochimilco at the other terminus. It has food, flowers, music and 112 miles of canals.

Also in the early planning stages is an 11 km, 22 station east-west light rail line. The tram will serve the old town center and use flexity swift rolling stock like that used in Minneapolis.

El Tren Ligero - Light rail in Mexico City
History of tramways and light rail in Mexico City
Mexico City Electric Transport official home page