The metro system finally began operations in Malaga this year after a long and drawn out process.
Around 14 years ago the contracts were signed and permissions granted to begin building the network throughout the city. During this period & with the ground work underway, the recession took hold of Spain in 2007/8, like most other countries, and the plans were shelved until further notice. When things started to look up, the construction work reconvened & now we have a part operational Metro in Malaga!
Currently, the metro has two functioning lines, both of which start from El Perchal (next to Maria Zambrano train station). Line 1 takes you ‘inland’ from there, with ten stops, finishing up at the Andulacia Tech College. Line 2 goes along beside the coast finishing at Palacio de los deportes after 5 other stops.
I took a trip on line 2 to the Palacio de los deportes to see how they are working. The station was easily accessible & you can use either the lift or an escalator to get down to the platform. There is a machine to buy tickets just next to the barrier, I got a return, 3€. If you buy a multi journey one however, the price is significantly reduced working out around 0.83€ per journey.
The trains themselves were great. Modern, clean and plenty of space. They have information ‘TV´s’ on board which clearly show you where you are & where you are going with announcements given in both Spanish and English. On getting my camera out though, a member of staff quickly appeared to tell me photos were forbidden for one reason or another.
On the way there, the carriage I was on was surprisingly busy. I stood the whole way which wasn’t too much of a problem but if you’re not holding on to something be careful, some of the corners were quite jerky.
The metro starts at 6.30am and run until 11pm Monday – Thursday. On Fridays & Saturdays they start around the same time but run a bit later, until 1.30am & on Sundays from 7am – 11pm. There should be one every 7.5 – 10minutes.
There are plans to have six lines in operation when it is fully complete. When this will be nobody really knows but they are talking about the lines being connected to the centre by 2016/17. Considering the opening of the two lines was nearly a year behind schedule there’s no guarantees of anything though!
It’s hard to judge how useful or successful the metro lines will be with less than a third of it in operation. Once there are connections open in the centre I think we will be able to see how popular they are. Sometimes I feel that cities look at other cities like we would look in our neighbours’ garden & see something they have that we don’t. We get it because they have but do we really need it? Only time will tell!