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Thursday, November 10, 2016, 22:19

South Island Line to open by year-end


South Island Line to open by year-end
(Graphic by Alex Tang/China Daily)

HONG KONG - Rail services will connect Hong Kong's business district and the southern part of the Hong Kong Island by the end of the year, MTR Corporation (MTRC) Chairman Frederick Ma Si-hang announced on Thursday.

The South Island Line was initially scheduled to operate by December last year

The new line will benefit local families and tourists going to the Ocean Park and commuters living in populated communities in the Southern District.

An exact opening date is yet to be announced.

It will make Admiralty a multi-intersection of metro lines as the Tsuen Wan Line, Island Line and the South Island Line meet at the station. The Shatin to Central Link , which is expected to start services in 2019, will also be connected to Admiralty.

Ma said that it had overcome serious construction difficulties at Admiralty Station due to it being a multi-interchange station. He also stressed that construction costs were within the budget, which was HK$16.9 billion according to the latest annual report released earlier this year.

The South Island Line was initially scheduled to operate by December last year. But the MTR announced in 2014 that the launch would be pushed back by six months. This is due to difficulties in excavating at Admiralty Station. However, last year, the opening was again postponed.

According to the MTRC figures, the line runs for 7 kilometers, connecting Admiralty, the Ocean Park, Wong Chuk-hang - an old industrial district which will become a new business center – with Lei Tung and South Horizons on Ap Lei Chau.

The new line consists of 10 new 3-car S-Trains using steel wheels. During peak hours, it can provide services every 3 minutes. The trains are externally similar to the existing one in service on the Kwun Tong Line. But they will be totally driverless, being the second such line in Hong Kong after the Disneyland Resort Line, according to the MTRC.

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