Line 4 of the Rio Underground System, which exclusively utilizes China-made trains, is set to start operating today. Line 4 will transport 300,000 people per day. The travel time from downtown Rio to the Olympic Park will be shortened to around half an hour.
Given its status as the Olympic Line, each station of Line 4 is decorated with Olympic elements. A running track is painted on the floor from the hall to the inbound gateways, while swimming tracks provide outbound guidance. In one station located close to Rocinha, the largest slum in Rio, photos of impoverished children hang on the hall. “Peace” is written in several languages on the wall of Ipanema Station.
Cconstruction of this special line started in 2010. It was initially expected to begin operation in December 2015. However, owing to economic and political factors, the date was pushed back to August 1. For now, only Olympic ticket holders and athletes can use this line. As for Rio citizens, they have to wait until September 19, when the Paralympic Games finish.