in·​ter·​ur·​ban ˌin-tər-ˈər-bən How to pronounce interurban (audio)
: going between or connecting cities or towns
an interurban road
interurban commuters

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Interurban is generally used to describe transportation. As a noun (as in "In those days you could take the interurban from Seattle to Tacoma"), interurban has meant a fairly heavy but fast electric train, something between an urban trolley and a full-fledged long-distance train, that offers more frequent service than an ordinary railway. Interurban transit today may include bus, ferry, and limousine—and, in a few lucky areas, a regional railway. With oil supplies dwindling, there's hope that interurban railways will be coming back into wider use.

Examples of interurban in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The South Shore line first opened in 1908 during the interurban era, when small trains linked towns and cities throughout Indiana, often running along streets. Tim Zorn,, 5 May 2021 The state’s 13th Court of Appeals reversed the ruling last year on the grounds that Texas Central is a railroad company and an interurban electric railway company. Dallas News, 24 June 2022 This eventually led to Berea’s playing an important role in the soon-to-follow interurban Rail System. Rich Heileman, cleveland, 30 Dec. 2022 The first zone includes about 34 acres bordered by the wastewater treatment plant to the north, interurban trail to the east, Oconomowoc River to the west and the conservatory to the south. Drew Dawson, Journal Sentinel, 11 Oct. 2022 Its Friday ruling does not address the question of whether the company is a railroad company, but its classification as an interurban electric railway is enough to give it the power of eminent domain. Dallas News, 24 June 2022 Eventually interurban passenger trains transported workers to and from Chicago’s outlying neighborhoods and suburbs. Susan Degrane,, 4 Nov. 2021 Intercity and interurban routes away from the NEC offer Amtrak the greatest opportunity for growth in the coming years. Ben Jones, CNN, 1 May 2021

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'interurban.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1875, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of interurban was in 1875

Dictionary Entries Near interurban

Cite this Entry

“Interurban.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 24 May. 2024.

Kids Definition


: connecting cities or towns
interurban transportation
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