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Paris mayor to push for 24-hour Metro service

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Paris mayor to push for 24-hour Metro service
Will Paris ever get a 24-hour Metro? Photo: Thomas Ulrich/Flickr
15:16 CET+01:00
Could Paris soon have a 24-hour Metro service? The mayor Anne Hidalgo said on Tuesday that she is in favour of it and is already in talks with the capital's transport chiefs.

Hidalgo told French TV on Tuesday that she wants to see a 24-hour service on the Metro in the future, but accepts the decision will ultimately be made by the capital's transport chiefs RATP.

The mayor is hoping to convince RATP bosses to extend the opening hours a little at a time over the coming years that will eventually result in a 24-hour service.

"What I have asked RATP and the president of the Ile de France region, is to be able to extend it by one hour each year," she told BFM TV.

If Hidalgo does stick to her pre-election promise of succeeding in making the Paris Metro run all night, it will be done on a staggered basis, with driverless lines 1 and 14 probably the first to operate 24-hours a day.

"You have to be pragmatic, that things will start with the automatic lines 1 and 14, where there is less staff commitments," said the mayor.

Hidalgo is also aware that her plan to keep the Metro open longer hours could also face obstacles other than having convince staff to work all night.

Last October RATP said: "Every night, on our network, there are 400 construction sites in progress. If they can't take place at night, we will have to postpone them, which will lead to repercussions on the services."

The cost of the keeping the Metro open all night will also be a hurdle. Last March Jean-Paul Huchon, president of the regional council for the Ile de France region, estimated it would run to around €40 million.

Currently the last Metro services during the week leave around 12:40 am on Fridays and Saturdays the last services leave at around 1.40pm. Some lines remain partly open all night during national holidays such as New Year's Eve or the "Fête de la Musique" festival on June 21.

Hidalgo's move to extend the Metro opening hours to 24-hours a day is part of her aim to reduce the high pollution levels in French capital. 

As part of her anti-pollution plan Hidalgo has vowed to ban the most polluting vehicles including coaches and trucks from the city from July this year.

"As they've already done in 200 European cities, we're going to introduce a 'reduced-emission zone' where we will progressively forbid access to polluting vehicles - diesel vehicles really," she told French newspaper Le Monde. 

by Priscillia Charles

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