Lula inaugurates new Rio subway station -- 20 years late
Tuesday 22 December 2009
Brazil's President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva on Monday inaugurated a long-awaited subway station at Rio's Ipanema beach that links to the neighborhood where most of the 2016 Summer Olympics will be held.
After languishing nearly 20 years for lack of funds, the Ipanema station boosts the city's two main subway lines that have also been growing slowly since 1970 and now cover 40 kilometers (25 miles) and carry more than half a million passengers a day.
Deemed insufficient for a city of 11 million, Rio's subway and public transport system is a key concern which the International Olympic Committee hopes will be resolved before the 2016 Games are held.
The new, 270-million-dollar "General Osorio" station was described as "the biggest urban cave in South America" by its master builder, Luiz Moreira.
"Fifty years ago, Rio was the picture of desolation and abandonment," Lula said at the station's official opening, as he showed off the gleaming new facility. It will be open to the public on Tuesday.
The president then got on the first subway bound for Maracana station, under the famous soccer stadium, that serves the southern subway line to the Barra de Tijuca neighborhood, site of many of the Olympic venues.
The Independent travel offers: Discover a world of inspiring destinations
- 2 Harry Potter fans can apply to the Hogwarts-inspired College of Wizardry
- 3 Jessica Chambers: 19-year-old woman 'doused with lighter fluid and burned alive' in the US
- 4 Russell Brand calls Nigel Farage 'poundshop Enoch Powell' in BBC Question Time debate
- 5 Orange Wednesdays are no more
Disgruntled RBS worker writes hilarious open letter to Russell Brand after anti-capitalist publicity stunt leaves him hungry
Shock poll shows voters believe Ukip is to the left of the Tories
Nigel Farage's approval rating hits 'record low' as popularity suffers in wake of Ukip sex scandal
Nigel Farage defends Kerry Smith 'ch***y' comment: 'If you are going for a Chinese, what do you say you’re going for?'
Ukip candidate jokes about 'shooting peasants' in racist and homophobic rant
Pakistan school attack live: Taliban kill at least 132 children in 'horrifying' massacre
£240 - £275 per day: Investigo: Support the global business through in-depth a...
Negotiable: Ashdown Group: Data Manager - MySQL, Shell Scripts, Java, VB Scrip...
£27000 - £32000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Application Support Analyst - near S...
£23000 - £27000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This successful group of compan...