Hangzhou’s first metro line has just opened to traffic. Ticketing began and stations opened at 14:30 on 24 November 2012.
The 48 km long line comprises of 31 stations. The main line has 25 stations, whilst the spur to Linping is made up of 6 individual stations.
This line crosses the Qiantang River between Linjiang and Jiangling Road stations. It also comes close to the West Lake at Ding’an Road, Longxiangqiao, and Fengqi Road stations. There is also a separate West Lake Cultural Square station.
The new line also connects three of the city’s railway stations — both the main city station (also known as Chengzhan) and the future East Railway Station, which is also expected to be served by Line 4. The line splits at the Coach Centre station, with the Linping spur making a stop at Yuhang Railway Station on the Shanghai-Hangzhou HSR. The arrival of the metro at the main city station solves a huge traffic headache for the city — taxis queues were known to be very long, and catching a taxi in the city centre was no easy task!
The main line termini are at Wenjin Road and Xianghu, with the Linping spur ending at Linping station. Fares start at ¥2.— for the first 4 kilometres and progressively rise as you go further.
Construction of Line 1 began on 28 March 2007. There was a rather serious accident on 15 November 2008, when 21 people lost their lives. There were two further deaths in late 2010, one in the Xianghu station works site, the other at the East Railway Station works site.