Rail and Trolleybus Transit Cities

[version=20 Aug 2001]

I highly recommend the list maintained by the Light Rail Transit Association. World List of LRT, Tramways and Metros by Michael Taplin. is at the URL: http://www.lrta.org/world/worldind.htm.

Another good list is maintained by Blickpunkt Straßenbahn magazine. Their list of tramways, metros, trolleybus systems and commuter rail is at the URL: http://www.blickpunktstrab.net/bs_liste_index_e.html.

Geographical Nomenclature

Country names are listed according to common English language practice. Where de facto national control differs from international recognition, the de facto nation is listed in square brackets.

Cities are listed by name of the central or principal city of the urban area, according to (the latin alphabet rendition of) the local name. Where common English practice differs substantially from local use, or the city was recently renamed, the English/previous name(s) is(are) listed in parentheses.


The divisions between the various modes are always somewhat arbitrary. The categorization used here is a combination of technology and service area/pattern. These criteria work relatively well among the limited North American examples but break down when they are applied to the diversity of systems in Europe or elsewhere.

Mode Codes

People Movers are a relatively new mode of public transit, but a subclass of People Movers, "funiculars" exist in hilly cities all over the world. The initial source for PMs was North American only. Additional work is required to list funicular and other PM systems worldwide.

Other Information

Years listed are the start of service for that mode (current incarnation). Dates of the form year/year are for tramways (street railways) where the first date is animal tramway, and the second year indicates electrification.

Population figures extracted from the 1994 National Geographic World Atlas or other sources. `K'=thousands, `m'=metropolitan area.


The original source of this list was Traction Yearbook, '87, with substantial modification to update the listing for political changes in the former Soviet Union and eastern Europe. Light rail and tramway (LR) listings were compared with M.R. Taplin's "World List of Urban Tramway and Light Rail Systems" included in Light Rail Review published annually by Platform 5 Publishing and the Light Rail Transit Association.

Information from Trolleybus Magazine, The New Electric Railway Journal and Light Rail & Modern Tramway has been used to update trolleybus and light rail/tramway entries respectively.

The World Gazetteer of Tram, Trolleybus, and Rapid Transit Systems series by Robert Peschkes (Part One: Latin America, 1980. Part Two: Asia with USSR, Australasia, Africa, 1986. Part Three: Europe, 1993) have been immensely helpful.

The Thomas Cook European Timetable and Thomas Cook Overseas Timetable were used to identify many suburban commuter rail operations.

Murray, Alan, World Trolleybus Encyclopaedia, Reading, UK: British Trolleybus Society and the Trolleybus Museum Company, 2000.


Installations not part of urban or suburban common carrier passenger transport (private use, rural lines, museums, etc) and facilities confined within a complex, institution, amusement park, airport, or other non-"public" space should not be included on this list.

The author is always interested in comments, corrections and further information. Please email to:


The latest version is always available on the World Wide Web at URL: http://home.cc.umanitoba.ca/~wyatt/rail-transit-list.html.

A version of this list, complete with source citations and notes is under development. It is available at the URL: http://home.cc.umanitoba.ca/~wyatt/rail-transit-notes.html.

Country Index

A: Argentina, Armenia, Australia, Austria, Azerbaijan
B: Belarus, Belgium, Bosnia Hercegovina, Brazil, Bulgaria
C: Canada, Chile, China, Colombia, Costa Rica, Croatia, Cuba, Czech Republic
D: Denmark
E: Ecuador, Egypt, Estonia
F: Finland, France
G: Georgia, Germany, Greece
H: Hong Kong Hungary
I: India, Indonesia, Iran, Ireland, Isle of Man, Israel, Italy
J: Japan
K: Kazakhstan, North Korea, South Korea, Kyrgystan
L: Latvia, Lebanon, Lithuania
M: Mexico, Moldova, Mongolia, Morocco, Myanmar
N: Nepal, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway
P: Pakistan, Paraguay, Peru, Phillippines, Poland, Portugal, Puerto Rico
R: Romania, Russian Federation
S: Senegal, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Africa, Spain, Sri Lanka, Sweden, Switzerland
T: Taiwan, Tajikistan, Tunisia, Turkey, Turkmenistan
U: Ukraine, United Kingdom of Great Britain & Northern Ireland, United States of America, Uzbekistan
V: Venezuela
Y: Yugoslavia