The European Synchrotron Radiation Source ESRF is now at the end of its third year of construction: Civil engineering of the buildings to accommodate the machine and the experiments is progressing very well; the installation of cables and ducts has begun; the occupation of the first building for the linear accelerator is expected to take place in the beginning of 1991. All major elements of the machine have been ordered, and the first transformers and the first elements of the booster synchrotron have arrived. The layout of the first set of beam lines has been defined. The first stored beam is expected to be available in mid-1992. After two years of commissioning the beam is expected to be available to the first external users in the second half of 1994. At this time 7-10 beam lines will be available, while a total of 30 ESRF beam lines, mostly on insertion devices, will be finished by 1998. Additional beam lines on bending magnets will be constructed and used by external "Collaborating Research Groups (CRGs)".