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The public works minister of Copenhagen has unveiled the city’s latest city transport destination: a sleek, escalator-free tram and metro system nicknamed “Rikspark,” for its central station.
The 16-mile network has already opened to the public, but only after state and local officials spent years negotiating with the Danish rail authority,, on issues including pricing, introduction and the tram route.
The central station is officially called the Virglea station but is also known as Rikspark due to its central location close to the river Nytorv.
In its first month the new transit network has carried about 160,000 passengers, said Jiønen Friis from Copenhagen’s public works ministry. It is open 365 days a year from 6am and the first tram, a small model, was ceremonially fired by a cannon on Saturday morning.
State officials say the transit network is part of Copenhagen’s grand legacy and will “transform the city’s transportation”.
The new system will be completed in two phases: the entire open metro is expected to be in operation by 2019, and the 17.5 miles of extended tram will be ready by the end of 2021.
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Car transport in the city of the tall and thin, has been restricted since Copenhagen is one of the world’s oldest capitals of culture.
Its high railway densities caused a traffic jam along one-third of the world’s most frequently used subway lines.
The new network, which offers free public transport from eight stations, is designed to make travel easier by making everyday life more efficient.
It was designed to solve some of the traffic problems in the centre of the capital, thanks to the routing of the public bus routes.
Danish budget airline Bamairu offers tickets between nine and 25 minutes from the city centre to several convenient stops.