RER B is one of the five lines in the Réseau Express Régional (English: Regional Express Network), a hybrid suburban commuter and rapid transit system serving Paris, France and its Île-de-France suburbs. The 80 km (50 mi) RER B line crosses the Paris region from north to south, with all trains serving a group of stations in central Paris, before branching out towards the ends of the line.
|Termini||Aéroport Charles de Gaulle 2 TGV (B3), Mitry–Claye (B5)|
Robinson (B2), Saint-Rémy-lès-Chevreuse (B4)
|Type||Rapid transit/commuter rail|
|System||Réseau Express Régional|
|Rolling stock||MI 79, MI 84|
|Ridership||165 million journeys per annum (2004)|
|Opened||8 December 1977|
(last extension in 1994)
|Line length||80 km (50 mi)|
|Track gauge||1,435 mm (4 ft 8+1⁄2 in) standard gauge|
The line opened in stages starting in December 1977 by connecting two existing suburban commuter rail lines with a new tunnel under Paris: the Chemin de Fer du Nord to the north (which formerly terminated at Gare du Nord) and the Ligne de Sceaux to the south (which formerly terminated at Luxembourg station).
The RER B, along with the rest of the RER network, has had a significant social impact on Paris and the surrounding region by speeding up trips across central Paris, by making far fewer stops than the Paris Métro and by bringing far-flung suburbs within easy reach of the city centre. The line has far exceeded all traffic expectations, with passengers taking 165 million journeys per year in 2004. That makes the RER B the second busiest single rail line in Europe.
The RER B opened in stages starting in December 1977 by connecting two existing suburban commuter rail lines with a new tunnel under Paris: the Chemin de Fer du Nord to the north (which formerly terminated at Gare du Nord) and the Ligne de Sceaux to the south (which formerly terminated at Luxembourg station).
- June 1846: The Ligne de Sceaux from Massy to Denfert-Rochereau opens to the public.
- 1862: The Chemin de Fer du Nord line from Paris to Soissons via Mitry-Claye is opened.
- 1895: The Ligne de Sceaux is extended from Denfert-Rochereau to Luxembourg.
- 1937: The CMP (the operator of the Paris Métro and predecessor of today's RATP) purchases the Ligne de Sceaux, planning to integrate it into a future regional metro network, now known as the Réseau Express Régional (RER).
- May 1976: A new 13.5 km (8.4 mi) long branch from Aulnay-sous-Bois to Paris-Charles de Gaulle Airport (terminal 1) is opened, linking the airport with Paris.
- December 1977: The Ligne de Sceaux is extended north 2 km (1.2 mi) from Luxembourg station to Châtelet-les Halles station and becomes the RER B.
- December 1981: The RER B is extended north 2.5 km (1.6 mi) from Châtelet-les Halles station to Gare du Nord connecting with trains to Mitry-Claye and the airport. Because the lines north of Gare du Nord used a different electrification system (1.5 kV DC to the south, 25 kV AC to the north), passengers need to make a cross-platform transfer between trains on the north and south lines.
- January 1983: A new station, Parc-des-Expositions, opens between Villepinte and Roissy.
- June 1983: Improvements and dual-voltage equipment allow trains to begin travelling thru Gare du Nord and across entire length of the line.
- February 1988: A new station, St-Michel – Notre-Dame opens between Luxembourg and Châtelet in order to offer a quick connection with RER C and Paris Métro Line 10 at Cluny – La Sorbonne, a station which had been closed since World War II and was entirely renovated.
- October 1994: OrlyVAL line opens, connecting Antony station with Orly Airport.
- November 1994: The line is extended 1 km (0.62 mi) north to Aéroport Charles de Gaulle 2 – TGV.
- January 1998: A new station, La Plaine–Stade de France, opens near the Stade de France in time for the 1998 FIFA World Cup.
List of RER B stationsEdit
- RER B3
- Le Blanc-Mesnil
- Le Bourget
- La Courneuve – Aubervilliers
- La Plaine – Stade de France
- Gare du Nord
- Châtelet – Les Halles
- St-Michel – Notre-Dame
- Cité Universitaire
RER B is operated by 117 sets of the MI 79 series and 31 sets of the MI 84 series. These are to be replaced from 2025.
- RATP official website (in French)
- RATP website in English
- Interactive Map of the RER (from RATP's website)
- Interactive Map of the Paris métro (from RATP's website)
- Mobidf website, dedicated to the RER (unofficial)[permanent dead link] (in French)
- Metro-Pole website, dedicated to Paris public transports (unofficial) (in French)