Egypt to inaugurate Middle East's biggest metro station on Sunday

Ahram Online , Saturday 19 Oct 2019

metro station
(Photo: Al-Ahram)

Egypt will inaugurate the Middle East's biggest metro station in Cairo on Sunday, as it has set its eyes on revamping the capital's fastest means of transportation.

Transportation minister Kamel Al-Wazir is scheduled to attend the official launch of operations at Heliopolis Station, built on 10,000 square metres, making it the biggest in the region, according to the transportation ministry.

Construction began at the new metro station, which falls under the metro's Phase 4 of Line 3, since 2015. It is set to connect to Cairo International Airport, and Al-Salam city on the outskirts of the capital.

Designed in a European style, the new station, all air-conditioned, comprises a number of facilities, including escalators, elevators, and automated machines for the direct purchase of tickets.

The inauguration comes a few months after Egypt inaugurated a number of vital stations in Heliopolis in the same phase, including Haroun El-Rashid, El-Shams Club, and Alf Maskan underground stations, ahead of hosting the Africa Cup of Nations last June.

It also comes as the country increased last summer the line's ticket prices to EGP 10.

The underground system, once deemed the cheapest with a basic fare of EGP 1, has seen multiple price hikes in recent years to offset annual losses and develop ailing old lines in the network.

Rides up to nine stops at the third metro line, which is currently the newest, cost EGP 5; rides from 16 stops are priced at EGP 7; and rides exceeding 16 stops cost EGP 10.

Phase 4 of Line 3 extends through 10 stations from Haroun El-Rashid to Cairo International Airport with a total length of 15.8 km passing through the areas of Heliopolis Square, Alf Maskan, Gesr El-Suez, Haykstep Bridge, Ring Road, and Ismailia Desert Road.

Work on this phase began in July 2015 and the final cost of construction was 257 million euros plus an approximate EGP 1.842 billion.

The completed third line is scheduled to open in 2022 and will serve three million commuters daily.

The Cairo underground metro system currently carries more than four million passengers daily throughout the capital and surrounding areas.

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