A Trip on the Tren Suburbano

Mexico City recently opened its first suburban train line, the tren suburbano.  There’s only one line currently and it leaves from Estación Buenavista, near the city center, and ends in Cuautitlán, a suburb located to the north in the state of México.  Talking to those who take the line, it’s reduced the commute time to get to the city by over an hour each way.  There are plans to extend the first line several stops, as well as to add other lines serving different areas.  If any get built in the next two months, mikesnotes will be sure to report.

Buenavista is one word...

Buenavista is one word...

Recently, we took a trip out on the tren suburbano to see what it’s like.  One-way to Cuautitlán on the electrified line is 16.3 miles.  The journey takes about a half hour, has frequent service up to 9 trips per hour, costs $1 (or so), and passes five in-line stations.  There are some pictures below.  Most of the stations look pretty much the same.

Cuautitlán, at the end of the line, has a pleasant zócalo, with shops and restaurants and a bustling marketplace.  The local station, like others on the line, has space for a transit center and includes a massive concrete warehouse.  This open space seems intended for use by small shops, but, true to form, it hasn’t been finished yet and is quite bare (security objected to our request for a picture).  It’s not clear how building such a massive new commercial area five blocks from the zócalo will impact the existing businesses.  Then again, given the substantial reduction in travel time to all-parts-Mexico-D.F., I’d have to assume that business will grow.

 

 

México, D.F.

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