Quito Metro: a solution to improve access and quality of urban transport

May 05, 2024

On December 1, 2023, the first line of the Quito Metro was launched, the most significant engineering work in Quito and Ecuador regarding urban mobility. It received financial support from CAF amounting to 402 million dollars, among other international financing bodies.

Quito Metro: a solution to improve access and quality of transport

The quality of urban transport, particularly public transport, ranks among the top five issues for the residents of Quito according to the 2023 Citizen Perception Survey. December 1, 2023, marked a milestone with the potential to improve these perceptions with the launch of the first line of the Quito Metro, which also received financial support from CAF for 402 million dollars, along with other international financing organizations.

This is the most significant engineering work in Quito and Ecuador regarding mobility. The first line of the Quito Metro features 22.6 km of tunnel and 15 stations, catering to a demand of up to 450,000 daily trips. The journey between the two terminal stations takes an average of 34.5 minutes, resulting in a time saving of approximately 45 to 55 minutes for public transport users, and 23 minutes for private transport users. This reduction in travel time will allow the people of Quito to dedicate more productive time to work, more hours for study, quality time with their families, more opportunities to extend hobbies and amenities, or savor a delicious street cevichocho, among others.

This initiative, part of the “Development Plan for the Integrated Public Transport System,” marks a significant step by the Municipality of Quito to improve mobility conditions in the Metropolitan District, benefiting thousands of residents in the capital city.

Moreover, being a 100% electric transport, it is expected to result in a reduction of CO2 emissions by between 67,000 and 84,000 tons annually, equivalent to the emissions from 20,000 private gasoline vehicles, improving the air that the people of Quito breathe and contributing to the health of the planet.

The provision of elevators and priority access doors will improve mobility for the elderly, pregnant women, children, and individuals with mobility disabilities, making Quito a more inclusive city.

The inclusion of 5 stations that also connect with Ecovía, Trolebús, and Metrobús facilitates the integration between different modes of transport, thus promoting multimodality in the mobility of the people of Quito.

A total of 240 police officers have been assigned to the metro, ensuring that users feel safer and addressing another of the city's primary concerns.

Furthermore, improving access and quality of public transport is expected to lead to more jobs and better incomes for the people of Quito, increases in the activity of businesses located around the new stations, and a reduction in the use of private transport. This will lead to less traffic congestion, less environmental pollution, less noise, and fewer traffic accidents.

The new Quito Metro is an exemplary and iconic project in relation to the urban mobility projects that CAF promotes in Latin America and the Caribbean. As highlighted in the ImpactCAF report - Urban Mobility, from 2018 to 2023, CAF has financed 36 operations in this area of action for a total amount of USD 2.600 million in six countries of the region. With initiatives like the Quito Metro, CAF seeks to ensure access and quality of urban transport, as well as mitigate the negative consequences it may generate, to ensure that Latin Americans and Caribbean people can safely, equitably, and sustainably access the opportunities that the city offers.