A ceremony was held last week to mark the start of work on a 5.8km extension of Line 14 of the Paris metro.Â Â
The $1.88bn development will add four stations to the track and move its terminus from Saint-Lazare in the north-west of the city to Mairie de Saint Ouen, which is on the northern side of the Périphérique. The intermediate stations will be Pont Cardinet, Porte de Clichy and Clichy Saint Ouen. Construction is expected to be finished in 2017.Â
The project is designed to ease congestion on the line, which can carry up to 40,000 passengers per hour.Â Â
It will be the line’s third extension since it was opened in 1998, at which point it ran between Madeleine and BibliothÃ¨que Mitterrand. In 2003 it was extended from Madeleine to Saint-Lazare, and in 2007 it was extended south from Mitterrand to Olympiades.Â Â
Two additional sections are planned in the future, extending it north to St Denis Pleyel and south to Orly Airport via Villejuifwill. This will make the line 30km long.Â Â
In March, Line 14 began using 18 MP89 units, a rubber-tired driverless train manufactured by Alstrom that is intended to cut operational costs. Last week, Line 4 was awarded $347m to convert to automated trains as well, although they are not expected to run until 2020.