Discover our work in Rail


UITP brings operators and infrastructure owners from across the world around the table in three Committees: Light Rail, Metro and Regional & Suburban Rail. Stakeholders from across the rail sector, such as operators, organising authorities, and the supply industry, also work together on topics such as automation, asset management and security in different working groups.

To connect towns and suburbs directly to the heart of cities, we rely on regional and suburban rail. It is on of the most efficient and sustainable ways to carry millions of commuters from their home to jobs and services comfortably and quickly.

Metros, meanwhile, run on segregated infrastructure and often make for the fastest and most energy-efficient way to get around a city. We’ve all heard of London’s “Tube”, New York City’s “Subway”, Hong Kong’s “MTR” that function as the backbone for their city’s urban mobility networks.

Light rail and tram systems (LRT) are going through a remarkable renaissance. In Europe alone, 420 kilometres of new lines opened between 2015 and 2018. With their ability to move large amounts of people through the heart of cities safely and sustainably, LRT truly hold a vital place in the future of mobility.

The committees create and distribute knowledge and offer peers a platform for exchange, discussion and benchmarking. They also deliver studies, reports and position papers, monitor industry evolution and advocate for their transport mode.

“Uninterrupted operation of railway transport, including metro networks, is a key factor for the sustainable urban economic development. This has become particularly obvious during the coronavirus pandemic. I would like to express my deep gratitude to UITP for its invaluable contribution to the fight against COVID-19.

UITP has become a unique platform for experience exchange, providing the precious support for the whole transport sector.”

Roman Latypov, Deputy CEO for Strategy and Client Service, Moscow Metro, Chair of UITP Metro Committee

“Light Rail Systems all over the world are a significant part of sustainable public transport. The UITP Light Rail Committee is a representation of the operators of different countries, all working together to share their experience and to help others to reach the

highest standards in sustainable public transport - particularly during the current difficult times.”

Andrés Muñoz de Dios Rodríguez, Managing Director, Metropolitano de Tenerife, Chair of UITP Light Rail Committee

“An attractive supply on rail is the backbone of every public transport system. To meet the challenges and impacts of climate change, rail public transport has to be strengthened in the next years.

This is one of our targets we are focussing on in the UITP RSR Committee.”

Christian Höglmeier, Chief Technical Officer, Verkehrsbetriebe Karlsruhe GMBH, Chair of UITP Regional & Suburban Rail Committee

Recent publications

The Global Tram and Light Rail Landscape

In 2017, for the first time, Asia-Pacific exceeded Europe’s development of LRT. The trend is expected to continue as China started massive investments, while Europe has to dedicate significant resources to asset maintenance and modernisation.

Resuming public transport services post-lockdown

With its drastic impact on mobility, the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic will likely be felt for years. This is equally true for rail. In ‘Resuming services during a global health pandemic’, we look at 10 critical challenges facing the public transport sector.

World metro figures

Every day, 168 million people rely on metros for their mobility, the vast majority of them in Asia. And metros are on the rise, with cities consistently constructing more systems over recent decades.

Light rail and tram: The European outlook

389 cities around the world use light rail and tram systems (LRT) in their urban mobility systems, moving over 10 billion passengers per year across Europe. Find all the figures in our statistics brief from November 2019.