CHINA: A fourth metro line serving the coastal city of Ningbo was opened for revenue service on December 23, following an inauguration ceremony attended by mayor Qiu Dongyao.


Running for 36·5 km from Cicheng in the northwest to the tourist area around Dongqian Lake in the southeast, Line 4 serves 25 stations, including connections to the China Railway network at Zhuangqiao, Ningbo Station and Ningbo Dong. Interchange is provided to Line 1 at Daqing Bridge, Line 2 at Ningbo Station and Line 3 at Children’s Park.

Authorised in November 2013 and under construction since November 2015, the line runs underground through the city centre, but includes an 11·4 km elevated section with seven stations at the northern end. Part of this shares three-deck viaduct which carries the city’s western ring road.


The line is operated by a fleet of six-car Type B2 trainsets, which have a maximum speed of 80 km/h. These are based at a depot near Dongqian Lake, with a smaller stabling facility at Cicheng. Four of the trains are equipped with permanent magnet synchronous traction motors, and the remainder have asynchronous drives.

Services are initially operating from 06.00 to 22.50 each day, with a peak headway of 4 min 25 sec.


The 27·6 km first phase of Line 5 with 22 stations is now expected to open during 2021, taking the total length of the network to 173·1 km. Ningbo’s 2020-25 metro expansion programme includes extensions to lines 2, 3 and 5 as well as new lines 6, 7 and 8 which are at the planning stage. This programme would also see Line 4 extended to Cicheng West and south from Dongqian Lake, to the International Conference Centre, adding 5 km and two stations.