Mexico City, Mexico, Commuter Rail

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date


Subject Area

place - north america, mode - rail, economics - appraisal/evaluation, economics - finance


Mexico, collaboration and cooperation, development, financing


The Mexico City Metropolitan Area in Mexico has grown beyond the original confines of the Federal District and sprawled into surrounding cities located in Mexico State. This transition from a large but centralized city to a sprawling megalopolis means that the challenge of providing services, including adequate transportation options, to the population is growing exponentially. In response to the growing population of commuters, the government has invested in various mass transit projects to increase travel efficiency. The development of a commuter rail system capable of transporting hundreds of thousands of suburban commuters is a priority project that has spanned three Mexican presidencies with continued support. Since its opening in 2008, this suburban electric rail system, the Ferrocarril Suburbano, has been serving commuters between the Mexico City greater metropolitan area and municipalities in the northwest, greatly reducing passenger travel time and curtailing emissions. The project has been sponsored at all levels of government—federal, state, and local—and includes a public-private partnership. Apart from the project's uniqueness in its working collaboration between the different levels of government, as well as the successful concession process and the partnership with the concessionaire, it is also distinctive because it is the first commuter rail project of its kind in Mexico that uses existing rail infrastructure. This study examines the project's development, financing, and concession process.


Permission to publish the abstract has been given by TRB, copyright remains with them.