WIT Press

High Speed Rail, A New Mode Of Suburban Metropolitan Transport


Free (open access)





Page Range

265 - 274




709 kb

Paper DOI



WIT Press


M. Garmendia, J. M. Ureña, A. Rivas, J. M. Coronado, J. M. Menéndez, I. Gallego & V. Romero


High Speed Rail (HSR) was conceived as an alternative to air transport to interconnect big cities and metropolises from 400 to 600 km distances. Recently these HSR lines are starting to have stations in traditional cities or new urban developments within the limits of each metropolis (between 20 and 100 km from the centre). The existence of these HSR stations in the periphery of metropolises is opening up two new metropolitan transportation behaviour possibilities. Firstly, the HSR used between central and peripheral metropolitan stations as a special new type of suburban metropolitan transport and secondly, peripheral HSR stations used to travel to/from other faraway places instead of using the central HSR stations. This paper describes this new type of HSR cities, lines, stations and services, and points out several cases in Spain, France, Sweden and Great Britain where this is taking place. Data from two survey campaigns just implemented on the HSR passengers between Madrid and Toledo, and Madrid and Guadalajara is used to describe and analyse their profile. The paper points out the possibilities of this new type of HSR to help the generation of metropolitan sub-centres and to extend the metropolitan influence further away, analyses the HSR travelling patterns and allows indications of the type of processes that are taking place. Keywords: metropolitan areas, small cities, high-speed rail.


metropolitan areas, small cities, high-speed rail