Paris got its third automated Metro line this week, although for the next few months it will run with a mix of automated trains and ones with drivers as new equipment arrives.
Line 4, which runs from the Porte de Clignancourt on the north edge of Paris through the heart of the city including stops at three major rail stations and the Ile de la Cite, is the first to be automated since Line 1 got a do-over in 2012. Line 14, built in the 1990s, has always been automated.
The changeover requires not only new trains and signals, but also the installation of platform doors that keep passengers on the platform until the train doors open. The automated operation permits trains to run faster and with less time between. From an employer point of view, it also means the line is not affected by strikes.
Line 4 was the last of the lines built under Paris's first subway plan, opening in 1908. It was the first north-south line and the first line to cross the river via a tunnel to serve areas on the Left Bank.