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September 17, 2009
Rome Metro’s Line C runs into ruins

The Worldfocus signature story “Rome tunnels through ancient relics to build a subway” explored the difficulty of building a new subway line in Rome, where digging under the city means tunneling through ancient history.

The 10 downtown stations under construction with major ruins in the way. See the whole map.

Rome is currently building its third metro line, which will pass through the gaping hole in the middle of the city not covered by the A and B lines.

Part of the fullypautomated C line is expected to open in 2011, but the construction process has been hampered by antiquities that are omnipresent in the historic center of Rome.

Two-thirds of the 17-mile line is slated to be underground. Of the 30 total stations, the 10 with major archaeological material are depicted. Read more (in Italian) about these specific stations from Rome’s archaeological agency (Soprintendenza Archeologica di Roma).

Rome’s existing lines A and B, in addition to the planned C and D lines. Image from

More facts on the future Line C, according to the official project website:

  • Velocity: 24 mph on average and 55 mph maximum
  • Train capacity: 1,200 passengers per train and 24,000 per hour in one direction
  • Cost: 3 billion euros ($4.3 billion)
  • Archaeological digging: 21 million cubic feet, which is less than 1/7 of overall excavations

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1 comment


A very excellent map!

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