Istanbul’s rail network continues to grow, adding to urban mobility

Transportation and Infrastructure Minister Abdulkadir Uraloğlu emphasized the importance of current infrastructure projects in Istanbul and announced additional plans to increase investments in metro and railway developments. These measures are aimed at strategically addressing the growing traffic problems that the city has been experiencing.

The city of Istanbul is being interconnected by means of both subterranean and surface-level metro and railway lines, resulting in the formation of an intricate network resembling a web. The whole length of the rail system network in Istanbul is 338.8 kilometers (210.9 miles). According to the minister’s statement to the Sabah daily, the total length of the metro lines that have been implemented amounts to 130.2 kilometers.

The minister announced that there are presently ongoing building projects for metro routes spanning a combined distance of 55.7 kilometers. Upon completion of these initiatives, the cumulative length of metro lines in the city would expand to 185.9 kilometers.

The speaker emphasized that after all projects are completed, the comprehensive rail system network in Istanbul will span a total distance of 394.5 kilometers, with about 50% of the network being created under the auspices of our ministry.

According to Uraloğlu, the primary objective is to mitigate transportation challenges faced by inhabitants. This is achieved by the ongoing development of metro systems, which aim to alleviate the heavy traffic congestion in Istanbul and offer a comfortable and convenient mode of transit for the populace.

The minister provided a comprehensive overview of the projects undertaken by the ministry, which encompassed notable endeavors such as Marmaray and the Sabiha Gökçen-Kaynarca metro route. These initiatives have successfully facilitated a direct transportation link to the airport situated on the Anatolian side of the city. Additionally, the minister unveiled forthcoming projects during the announcement.

The Sabah article highlights the Levent-Hisarüstü metro line, which spans a distance of 3.3 kilometers and commenced operations in November 2015. This line is one of several initiatives implemented by the ministry over the past decade.

The project yielded a substantial reduction in traffic congestion along Nispetiye Avenue, a crucial arterial road in Istanbul.

The metro route, measuring 7.4 kilometers in length, which linked the Sabiha Gökçen Airport with the Kadıköy-Kartal-Kaynarca metro route, commenced operations in October of the previous year. This development has had a notable impact on transportation, facilitating smoother and more efficient travel to the airport while also offering cost-effective alternatives.

In contrast, the ministry initiated the building of the Gayrettepe-Kağıthane-Istanbul Airport metro route about five years ago, coinciding with the inauguration of Istanbul Airport situated along the Black Sea coastline on the northern side of the city.

Currently, a distance of 34 kilometers has been completed out of the entire 37.5-kilometer line.

In contrast, the recently established 6.2-kilometer Başakşehir-Kayaşehir metro route not only caters to the vicinity of the city hospital but also enhances the public transportation infrastructure in this burgeoning region situated in the European sector of the city.

The Marmaray, an underwater railway tunnel that links Europe and Asia beneath the Bosporus, is considered a crucial infrastructure undertaking. It commenced operations on October 29, 2013. Since March 2019, the transportation network has undergone an expansion, resulting in the establishment of 43 stations that serve as connections between the regions of Gebze and Halkalı. This expansion has significantly reduced the entire travel time between stations to less than two hours.

In a written statement issued by the minister in July, it was observed that an impressive one billion passengers have utilized the route over a span of almost ten years since its establishment.

The Kazlıçeşme-Sirkeci route, which is anticipated to be finalized by the conclusion of 2023, is a new generation rail project designed to facilitate various types of trains including high-speed trains, conventional trains, city transport, and tourist trains. The primary objective of this project is to rejuvenate the previously inactive route, which became dormant subsequent to the implementation of the Marmaray project.

The project, which spans a distance of 8.3 kilometers, involves the establishment of eight stations and the implementation of green spaces and bicycle lanes.

During the test drive ceremony held on Saturday, the minister emphasized the significance of promoting public transportation, bicycle usage, and pedestrianization projects as part of our overarching strategy to enhance urban mobility. The Kazlıçeşme-Sirkeci Urban Transportation and Recreation-Oriented Transformation Project represents an exemplary case in point.


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