Public Transit Returns to Baghdad

Commuter train has run for a month, mayor proposes subway system
By Nick McMaster,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 18, 2008 2:10 PM CST
Iraqi train passengers leave from al-Alawi railway station, central Baghdad, Iraq, on Thursday, Oct. 30, 2008.   (AP Photo/Hadi Mizban)
camera-icon View 3 more images

(Newser) – After years of destabilizing violence, Baghdad has a commuter train again, the LA Times reports. For about a month, the “Baghdad Metro,” as employees call it, has made two complete trips around the city in the morning and afternoon for the benefit of working Iraqis who have to suffer through traffic choked by checkpoints and convoys.

The unofficial Metro is the only regular train service in Baghdad, but the city's mayor wants to change that, the Guardian reports: he announced plans yesterday for a subway network. The proposed system would have two lines crossing Baghdad, connecting neighborhoods split along sectarian lines. The mayor has opened a call for investors, and the government plans a feasibility study next year.