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RossioNovember 20, 2013

November 20, 2013

The Lisbon transportation network is quite comprehensive and even includes several national landmarks (the trams, funiculars, and Santa Justa Lift).  The majority of the city’s transportation is operated by Carris (Companhia Carris de Ferro de Lisboa) (Lisbon Tramways Company).  Carris was founded on September 18, 1872.  Today, it operates 745 buses, 57 trams, 3 funiculars, and the Santa Justa Lift, employs 2,766 people, and provides over 234.4 million passenger trips each year.  Carris also has a museum that displays its history at its operational Santo Amaro Depot.

However, Carris does not operate Lisbon’s Metro system.  The Metro, which is operated by Metropolitano de Lisboa, EPE, opened its first segment in 1959, making it Portugal’s first subway.  The system now has 4 lines serving 55 stations, many of which contain large pieces of artwork.  There are additional extensions to the system in the planning stage.

Lisbon "Remodelado" Trams

The Lisbon "Remodelado" trams are not just a means of transportation, but they are a tourist attraction in and of themselves! Carris, the Lisbon transit operator, built its own trams based off the design of the American made Brill trams starting in the 1920s. The "Remodelado" trams trace their history back to between 1932 and 1940 when the 200 Series and 700 Series trams were originally manufactured. In 1995, Carris installed new wheel trucks and electrical systems on 45 of the old car bodies, all of which remain in service today. Six cars have been converted for use on a special tourist line but the remaining thirty-nine cars remain in service on all of Lisbon\'s tram lines with the exception of Line 15.

Lisbon Siemens Articulated Trams

Carris ordered ten articulated trams from Siemens in 1995. These trams can only run on Line 15.

Lisbon Metro

The idea of building a subway in Lisbon dates back to 1888, when engineer Henrique de Lima e Cunha proposed an underground rail network for the city. However, it was not until 1955 that construction began and the Lisbon Metro finally opened on December 29, 1959. Following small extensions in the 1960s and 1970s, expansion has been more rapid since the 1990s. Today, the Lisbon Metro has 4 lines with 26.8 miles of track and 55 stations.

Lisbon Buses

Lisbon has a bus network of about 80 routes extending over 400 miles throughout the city, including 40 miles of bus lanes. The fleet has over 600 vehicles in it, mostly built by Mercedes-Benz, MAN, and Volvo.

Lisbon Funiculars

Lisbon's public transit system includes four funiculars, all of which are operated by Carris, the public surface transit operator. The first of these, the Lavra Funicular, opened in 1884 and rins between Largo da Anunciada and Rua Câmara Pestana. The next funicular, the Gloria Funicular, opened on October 24, 1885 and connects Praça Restauradores and Jardim de São Pedro de Alcântara in the Barrio Alto. The third funicular, the Bica Funicular, connects Largo do Calhariz with Rua de São Paulo and opened on June 28, 1892. All three were declared national monuments in 2002. The funicular cars themselves are the originals, though they have been refurbished and modernized over the years.

Museu da Carris (Carris Museum)

The Museu da Carris (Carris Museum) is located at the Santo Amaro Depot, where all of Lisbon's tram operations are still based today. The museum opened in 1999 and features several vintage vehicles that used to ply the city's streets.

CP Urbanos de Lisboa

CP Urbanos de Lisboa is the Lisbon area commuter rail operation, which is in turn is operated by CP, the Portuguese Railway company. The network consists of four lines and is one of the busiest commuter rail operations in all of Europe. It also accounts for 80 percent of CP's total ridership.