PALMA'S new metro link between the city centre and the University will come into operation early next month and, for the first few months, will be free.

The Balearic Minister for Public Works, Housing and Transport, Mabel Cabrer, confirmed yesterday that the inauguration of the new metro is just weeks away and that it will be free to start with because there are bound to be teething problems which may affect travellers and to also attract passengers.

The Minister said that the government expects some three million people per year to use the new service, two million of those being students.
The metro will operate out of Palma's new grand central station which came into operation on Saturday and run to the University via the Son Castello industrial estate.

Cabrer yesterday invited people whose land was subject to a compulsory purchase for the project, businesses on the industrial estate affected by the construction work and representatives from the UIB university on a visit to the stretch of the line which is operational between Son Sardina and the university.

She explained that the metro will cover the entire route in 13 minutes, travelling at an average speed of 100 kilometres per hour. It will take just seven minutes to reach the Son Castello industrial estate from the centre of Palma. Before the metro comes into full operations, the track has to be fully electrified and the service tested “But we are well into the final phase,” Cabrer said yesterday. “The metro will be ecologically-friendly and mark the dawn of a new era of modern and quality public transport in Majorca,” she added.
The metro fares have yet to be finalised.
Cabrer also announced yesterday that from March 15, the new “rover” public transport tickets will be on sale.
The business sector admitted that, after months of inconvenience while the metro was laid through the industrial estate, the new service is going to benefit trade.