Downtown Line 2 to open ahead of schedule in December

downtown line system

Minister for Transport and Second Minister for Defence Lui Tuck Yew announced during a Ministerial Community Visit to Zhenghua Division yesterday that the 12 stations of Downtown Line 2 (DTL2) will open in December 2015, ahead of the 1Q2016 timeframe announced previously.

The 12 stations are:

  1. (DT1) Bukit Panjang, interchange with the Bukit Panjang LRT Line
  2. (DT2) Cashew
  3. (DT3) Hillview
  4. (DT4) Reserved for the future Hume Station between (DT3) and (DT5)
  5. (DT5) Beauty World
  6. (DT6) King Albert Park
  7. (DT7) Sixth Avenue
  8. (DT8) Tan Kah Kee
  9. (DT9) Botanic Gardens, interchange with the Circle Line
  10. (DT10) Stevens, interchange with the future Thomson-East Coast Line
  11. (DT11) Newton, interchange with the North-South Line
  12. (DT12) Little India, interchange with the North-East Line
  13. (DT13) Rochor

The 16.6km long DTL2 comprises one depot and 12 stations, including four interchange stations at Little India, Newton, Botanic Gardens and Bukit Panjang. These interchange stations will link to the North East Line, North-South Line, Circle Line and Bukit Panjang LRT respectively, giving commuters greater accessibility to the rest of the island and shorter travel time.

A trip from Bukit Panjang to the city centre such as Marina Bay Financial Centre, which currently takes up to 60 minutes, will be shortened by up to one-third with the DTL. Travelling to entertainment venues and eateries in Coronation Plaza, Rail Mall, Bukit Panjang Plaza, Sixth Avenue and Beauty World Centre will also be more convenient.

On Track for Station Works and Train Testing

To catch up with the original schedule of DTL2, LTA explored ways to expedite the project while ensuring the highest safety and quality standards. Civil construction work and Electrical and Mechanical (E&M) installation works were precisely orchestrated to maximise efficiency, while weekly meetings and daily site checks were used to resolve any installation problems encountered on site expeditiously. Construction works for the DTL2 stations are now more than 95% complete, with E&M installation works now in the final stages for all the stations.

LTA has also set up a Local Control Centre at Little India station to allow for testing activities to commence earlier. Train testing for the stretch between Bukit Panjang and Beauty World stations began in January this year, and has been extended to all 12 stations since May 2015.

The current DTL Operation Control Centre (OCC) will be relocated to its permanent site at Gali Batu Depot when DTL2 is completed. The new depot, which achieved Temporary Occupation Permit status in January 2015, will have stabling capacity for 81 three-car trains. The at-grade depot has a seven-storey administration and workshop building, as well as other ancillary buildings to provide stabling, maintenance, operation and support facilities for DTL operations.

Since April this year, LTA has been testing operations from the Gali Batu OCC by switching over control and monitoring of the DTL1 systems from Kim Chuan OCC during engineering hours and switching back for actual service. Train testing across the DTL1 and DTL2 from Gali Batu OCC will begin by the third quarter of this year.

To facilitate the opening of DTL2 by December, LTA will relocate the OCC from Kim Chuan Depot to Gali Batu Depot once these tests are completed.

Construction company, Alpine Bau won two contracts in 2009 for construction of three stations at King Albert Park, Sixth Avenue and Tan Kah Kee, plus associated tunnels – the first of which broke through in September last year. Just after days, the company had promised the Singapore Land Transport Authority it would complete three underground stations and associated tunnels for the second phase of the Downtown Linem the company went bankrupt and this would have been expected to cause delays up to six months while contracts to complete the outstanding works are renegotiated.

With this update from LTA, this means that the delay caused by the insolvency of company has been completely recovered.