The first stretch of the Macao Light Rapid Transit (LRT) elevated railway is now open, meaning swifter journeys for visitors to Cotai and elsewhere on the island of Taipa.
Macao’s new public transport infrastructure is 9.3-km long and connects 11 stations. Among them are stops serving important transport hubs – Macau International Airport, the Taipa Ferry Terminal, and the Lotus Bridge checkpoint with Hengqin – and tourism hotspots such as Taipa Village, the Macau Jockey Club, and the integrated resorts in Cotai district.
From west to east, the stations are Ocean, Jockey Club, Stadium, Pai Kok, Cotai West, Lotus Checkpoint, East Asian Games, Cotai East, MUST, Airport and Taipa Ferry Terminal. A journey from end to end takes about 25 minutes.
The trains run at intervals of 5 to 10 minutes from 6:30 a.m. to 11:15 p.m. from Mondays to Thursdays, and from 6:30 a.m. to 11:59 p.m. from Fridays to Sundays and on public holidays.
An adult ticket costs MOP6 for a journey of up to three stops, MOP8 for a journey of up to six stops and MOP10 for a journey of up to 10 stops. Concession fares are available for children, the elderly and the disabled, and for people using electronic prepaid cards.
The first train service departed from the Taipa Ferry Terminal station at 3:33 p.m. on 10 December 2019. In its first week of operation, the LRT carried 215,800 passengers. The Macao SAR Government expects the LRT’s passenger volume to be about 20,000 a day.
The trains, each comprising between two and four coaches, have no driver, starting and stopping automatically. The rolling stock runs on pneumatic tyres along concrete tracks, so the passengers feel little vibration and any noise can be kept to a minimum. Each of the coaches can carry 100 passengers, meaning the longer trains can carry 400 people.
The Macao SAR Government has plans to extend the railway to serve the Macao Peninsula and more. The lower deck of the Sai Van Bridge will eventually carry the railway to Barra in the south of the peninsula.