Monday, September 10, 2012

Suburban rail in India

Suburban rail, urban rail, commuter rail, or regional rail, plays a major role in the public transport system of many of India's major cities. Suburban rail is defined as a rail service between a central business district and suburbs, a conurbation or other locations that draw large numbers of people on a daily basis. The trains providing such services may be termed suburban trains.

Mumbai's suburban trains handle 6.3 million commuters daily
 Suburban rail in India operates on lines shared with other passenger and freight trains (like the Lucknow-Kanpur Suburban Railway) or a combination of dedicated suburban lines and lines for long distance trains (like the Mumbai Suburban Railway). The infrastructure in India is owned by Indian Railways and usually operated by one or more of the railway zones of Indian Railways.
Chennai MRTS
 In some cities of India, the opening of rapid transit systems have led to a decline in use of the Suburban rail system.
Suburban trains that handle commuter traffic are mostly electric multiple units. They usually have nine or twelve coaches and sometimes even fifteen to handle rush hour traffic.

One unit of an EMU train consists of one power car and two general coaches. Thus a nine coach EMU is made up of three units having one power car at each end and one at the middle. The rakes in some of the suburban rails run on direct current and others on alternating current.


Many cities have their own dedicated suburban networks to cater to commuters. Currently, suburban networks operate in the Mumbai Metropolitan Region, Chennai, Kolkata, Delhi, Hyderabad, Pune, Barabanki-Lucknow and Lucknow-Kanpur. The suburban rail systems in Mumbai, Hyderabad, Pune, Barabanki-Lucknow and Lucknow-Kanpur do not have dedicated suburban tracks but share the tracks with long distance trains.

A suburban rail system is planned for Ahmedabad and Bangalore.
System Local Name City Opening Year No of Lines Notes
Chennai Suburban Railway சென்னை புறநகர் இருப்புவழி Chennai 1931 6 lines Broad gauge
Barabanki-Lucknow Suburban Railway बाराबंकी लखनऊ उपनगरीय रेलवे
بارا بنکی لکھنؤ اپنگریی ریلوے

2 lines Broad gauge
Delhi Suburban Railway दिल्ली उपनगरीय रेल्वे Delhi 1982
Broad gauge
Mumbai Suburban Railway मुंबई उपनगरीय रेल्वे Mumbai Metropolitan Region 1857 3 lines Broad gauge
Kolkata Suburban Railway কলকাতা শহরতলি রেল Kolkata 1854 3 lines Broad gauge
Lucknow-Kanpur Suburban Railway लखनऊ कानपुर उपनगरीय रेलवे
لکھنؤ کان پور اپنگریی ریلوے

2 lines Broad gauge
Multi-Modal Transport System (MMTS) హైదరాబాదు ఎం ఎం టి ఎస్ Hyderabad 2003 3 lines Broad gauge
Pune Suburban Railway पुणे उपनगरीय रेल्वे Pune
2 lines Broad gauge

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