From Academic Kids

This page is about the Paris commuter rail. In biology, RER is the abbreviation for rough endoplasmic reticulum.

The RER (French: IPA /εr ə εr/) is an urban public transportation network in Paris and the surrounding region. For the concept of suburban railway lines in tunnels in the centre of a city, see Regional express network. Nevertheless, the acronym RER is commonly used to describe the network that is currently being planned for the Brussels region, and also for major cities of Switzerland (S-Bahn in German).

The RER is composed of lines dating from the 19th century, such as the Ligne de Sceaux or the Paris-St Germain-en-Laye line (the first railway in France) and the Vincennes line, joined together in tunnels under the centre of Paris.

The Parisian RER is peculiar in the sense that certain segments are operated by the RATP and others by the SNCF. The practice of direct trains going from one operator to another is called interconnection.



The Parisian RER is composed (in 2003) of five lines: A, B, C, D, and E. In 2003, the only Parisian SNCF station not to be directly connected to the RER is the Gare Montparnasse. The TGV trains that arrive there are interconnected further upstream at Massy-Palaiseau.

In fact, the whole system is built out of SNCF lines, but in the first phase, the government transferred the right to operate the lines from the SNCF to the RATP (Saint-Germain-en-Laye line, Vincennes line; the Sceaux line had always been operated as part of the metro system). Then, in a second phase, the SNCF kept the right to operate its own lines. Only the central portion of line A (La Défense-Vincennes) and line B (Gare du Nord-Châtelet-Denfert-Rochereau) were constructed by the RATP.

This explains why the RER trains drive on the left, like SNCF trains (except in Alsace and in Moselle), contrary to the Paris Métro where trains drive on the right.

The RER name was first used when the Vincennes line, a heavily used commuter line to Boissy-Saint-Léger, was diverted from its terminus at the Bastille train station to a new underground station at Nation, in 1961. Shortly after this, the line from Étoile to La Défense was opened, a simple shuttle service. This was to be extended further westwards to join with the Saint-Germain-en-Laye line at Nanterre; this line, the oldest in France, was re-electrified using an overhead system (it had originally been electrified using third rail).

The RER network truly came into being in 1977 with the joining of the Nation line and the La Défense line, which became the eastern and western halves of the new RER line A. At the same time, the Ligne de Sceaux was extended from its terminus at Luxembourg, to meet line A at Châtelet-Les-Halles the network's central interchange station in the heart of Paris.

Line A

Cergy le Haut, Poissy and St Germain en Laye - Boissy St Leger and Marne la Vallee-Chessy

Line A is formed from the connection of the Saint-Germain-en-Laye line, originally part of the St Lazare network, on a new alignment from Nanterre through La Défense and the new stations of Auber (at the time of its construction the largest underground station in the world) and Châtelet-Les-Halles in the heart of Paris. The extension to the Gare de Lyon joined up the existing Vincennes line (Bastille to Boissy-Saint-Léger), completing the original line A. A branch of line A from Vincennes to Marne-la-Vallée was newly built. This was subsequently extended to Disneyland Resort Paris in the 1990s.

Line B

St Remy les Chevreuse and Robinson to Mitry-Claye and Aeroport Charles de Gaulle

Line B resulted from connecting the Luxembourg terminus of the Ligne de Sceaux with the Gare du Nord mainline railway terminus through Châtelet-Les-Halles.

Line C

St Quentin en Yvelines, Versailles RG, Argenteuil and Pontoise to Versailles Chantiers, Massy-Palaiseau, Dourdan and St Martin d'Etampes

Line C was created by connecting the Gare d'Orsay railway terminus (the present-day Musée d'Orsay) with the Invalides terminus of the Rive Gauche line to Versailles along the banks of the Seine.

Line D

Orry la Ville-Coye (and Creil) to Melun and Corbeil-Essonnes (and Malesherbes)

Line D connected the Gare du Nord with the Gare de Lyon via Châtelet-Les-Halles.

Line E (EOLE - Est Ouest Ligne Express)

Hausmann-St Lazare to Tournan en Brie and Chelles-Gournay (planned extension to Nogent le Perreux)

Finally, the construction of line E in 1998 between the termini of Gare Saint-Lazare and Gare de l'Est left the Gare Montparnasse the only mainline terminus in Paris not directly connected to the RER system, the TGV line out of Montparnasse being served by the RER through the suburban hub of Massy Palaiseau (see Ligne de Sceaux).

See also


  • Gaillard, M. (1991). Du Madeleine-Bastille à Météor: Histoire des transports Parisiens, Amiens: Martelle. ISBN 2878900138. (French)

External links

ja:RER nl:Réseau Express Régional sv:RER


Academic Kids Menu

  • Art and Cultures
    • Art (
    • Architecture (
    • Cultures (
    • Music (
    • Musical Instruments (
  • Biographies (
  • Clipart (
  • Geography (
    • Countries of the World (
    • Maps (
    • Flags (
    • Continents (
  • History (
    • Ancient Civilizations (
    • Industrial Revolution (
    • Middle Ages (
    • Prehistory (
    • Renaissance (
    • Timelines (
    • United States (
    • Wars (
    • World History (
  • Human Body (
  • Mathematics (
  • Reference (
  • Science (
    • Animals (
    • Aviation (
    • Dinosaurs (
    • Earth (
    • Inventions (
    • Physical Science (
    • Plants (
    • Scientists (
  • Social Studies (
    • Anthropology (
    • Economics (
    • Government (
    • Religion (
    • Holidays (
  • Space and Astronomy
    • Solar System (
    • Planets (
  • Sports (
  • Timelines (
  • Weather (
  • US States (


  • Home Page (
  • Contact Us (

  • Clip Art (
Personal tools