Last updated on Jan 24, 2018
Suzhou is building a subway network to ease traffic congestion and meet urban development demands. The city started building the subway in 2008 and the first line was officially opened on April 28, 2012.
Logo for Suzhou Subway
An S-shaped logo, indicating harmonious transportation in a harmonious society, has been designed to represent Suzhou Subway lines.
With an investment of 12.6 billion yuan, the subway project is the largest urban construction program to date in Suzhou and has made it the first prefecture-level city in the country to construct subway lines.
By October 2017, there were three subway lines in Suzhou: Metro Line 1, 2, 4 and its branch line. These metro lines extend a total length of 121 kilometers and have 97 stations including five transfer stations.
In October 2017, Suzhou Rail Transit had two metro lines under construction: Metro Line 3 and 5. Altogether 71 stations are planned along the two metro lines totaling 89.372 kilometers. The city plans to finish the construction of Metro Line 6, 7, 8 and S1 by 2022, with a combined length of 148.5 kilometers and 111 stations. According to the long-term planning, the city will build 15 more metro lines totaling 768 kilometers.
In 2016, the Suzhou rail transit system transported 150.57 million passengers, up nearly 10 percent from the previous year.
Suzhou metro lines are charged depending on distance. According to the price table, the price starts at 2 yuan for 6 kilometers; from 6 to 16 kilometers 1 yuan is added for every 5 kilometers; from 16 to 30 kilometers 1 yuan is added for every 7 kilometers; above 30 kilometers 1 yuan is paid for every 9 kilometers. Passengers taking metro lines for more than 120 minutes should pay the overtime charge.
Special groups of people can enjoy beneficial policies on ticket prices. For example, disabled persons, the blind and students within the compulsory education age can take the metro trains for free. Aged passengers over 70 can take trains for free except during rush hours (7am to 9am, 5pm to 7pm).
Besides, all the passengers who take Suzhou Traffic Cards, Educational E-Cards and Citizen Cards can enjoy a 5-percent discount in price.
Suzhou Metro network plan (click the image to enlarge)
Metro Line 1
Suzhou Metro Line 1 is the first subway line of the city as well as the first one among all the domestic cities on a prefectural level.
Metro Line 1 follows an east-west route with a total length of 25.739 kilometers. It starts from Wuzhong District’s Mudu Station and the terminal is Zhongnan Street Station in the Industrial Zone and contains altogether 24 underground stations.
According to Suzhou Rail Transport Co Ltd, the train for Line 1 has a rated capacity of 950 people and an overcrowded capacity of 1,340. The average speed of trains on Line 1 is estimated at around 35 kilometers per hour and it will take about 43 minutes to complete the route.
Officials said Line 1 designers had paid special attention to protect the old town and its historic architecture. The line will avoid old trees and buildings and measures have been taken to reduce vibrations from passing trains.
Metro Line 1 diagram
Metro Line 1 price scheme (click on the image to enlarge)
Metro Line 2
The 26.56-kilometer rail of Suzhou Metro Line 2 has 17 underground stations and five elevated stations, stretching from Beijing-Shanghai High Speed Rail Station in Xiangcheng District to Baodaiqiao Station in Wuzhong District. It cost more than 14.5 billion yuan (US$2.39 billion) and took four years to build.
Metro Line 2 diagram
Ticket prices will range from 2 yuan to 6 yuan, same as Metro Line 1. But transfer between Line 1 and Line 2 at Guangji Road Station, Xingtang Street Station, Zhongnan Street Station and High Speed Railway Station will cost more, but within 7 yuan.
Metro Line 2 price scheme
Before its trial operation, Line 2 conducted a test run from December 9 to 15, offering free ride to about 10,000 passengers every day. The test run was smooth and successful.
Metro Line 4
Metro Line 4 running from north to south connects Xiangcheng, Gusu, Wuzhong and Wujiang Districts. It is the third metro line opened in Suzhou and a backbone line promoting the development of the city.
The 42.022-kilometer main line of Metro Line 4 with altogether 31 stations starts from Longdaobang Station in Xiangcheng District and ends at Tongli Station in Wujiang District. The branch of Metro Line 4 has 10.8 kilometers in length and seven stations. It starts in north from Hongzhuang Station in Wuzhong District and ends in Muli Station in the district. The whole Metro Line 4 is built underground and runs through Huoli Island in Xiangcheng District, Pingjiang New City, Suzhou Railway Station, Beisi Pagoda, Guanqian Commercial Area, South Gate Commercial Area, Wuzhong District Central Area, Suzhou Taihu New City, Wujiang Bus Station and other major areas. Passengers can transfer to the planned Nantong-Suzhou-Jiaxing Intercity Railway at the terminal station.
There are four transfer stations along Metro Line 4: Leqiao Station connecting Metro Line 1, Suzhou Railway Station and East Shihu Road Station connecting Metro Line 2 and Hongzhuang Station connecting the branch line.
Construction of Metro Line 4 was started in September 27, 2012 and the trial operation started on April 15, 2017.
On December 28, 2015, Suzhou Rail Transit official website announced the planning (2016-2022) for urban rail transit construction in Suzhou. According to the short-term planning, Suzhou will build Metro Line 6, 7, 8 and S1 with a total length of 148.5 kilometers and 111 stations, including three stations of the 5.1-kilometer Shanghai Metro Line 11’s Huaqiao section. These four metro lines have 141.7 kilometers of underground part, 6.37 kilometers of elevated part, 430 meters of transition section, 107 underground stations and four elevated stations (including three elevated stations of Shanghai Metro Line 11’s Huaqiao section); The planning also includes the construction of 78.6-kilometer extension work of Metro Line 1, 6, 7 and 9.
Fifteen lines totaling 768 kilometers will be built according to the long-term planning. Among them, nine are urban rail transit lines and six are regional rail transit lines.