Buenos Aires retiring its century-old subway cars

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Associated Press

Posted on January 2, 2013 at 10:01 PM

Updated Wednesday, Jan 2 at 10:03 PM

BUENOS AIRES, Argentina (AP) — The wooden subway cars on the Buenos Aires subway's A-line will soon be replaced by Chinese-made rolling stock, and that has people in the Argentine capital nostalgic.

The 90 Belgian cars began rolling in 1913 on Latin America's first subway line. And they are the oldest subway cars still operating in the world, carrying 160,000 passengers on the line daily.

The old cars still attract tourists, but they've become increasingly difficult to maintain. Mayor Mauricio Macri says they're unsafe and must be replaced.

That saddens Aquilino Gonzalez Podesta, founder of the Friends of the Subway. He agrees the historic cars must go, but wonders why it can't wait until after the line's centennial in 11 months.

In his words, "There are some sentimental questions that overrule logic."

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