Singapore Mass Rapid Transit (SMRT)system has been an integral part of the country's public transportation system since its inception in 1987. With over 231 kilometres of track and 134 operational stations, the MRT system has revolutionised the way people move around the city-state. Over the years, the MRT system has undergone several upgrades and expansion plans to meet the growing demand for public transportation.
Upcoming Projects and Expansion Plans
The Singapore government has laid out ambitious plans to expand the MRT system further. The Land Transport Authority (LTA) has set a target of doubling the length of the rail network to 360 kilometres by 2030. This expansion plan includes the construction of new lines and extensions to existing ones.
One of the upcoming projects is the Circle Line 6 (CCL6) extension. It will add three stations between HarbourFront and Marina Bay MRT stations, closing the loop for CCL. The stations are Keppel, Cantonment, and Prince Edward Road.
The next projects are CRL Phase 2 (CRL2) and Cross Island Line.CRL2 is approximately 15 kilometres and comprises six underground stations – Turf City, King Albert Park, Maju, Clementi, West Coast, and Jurong Lake District. The Environmental Impact Study for CRL2 has been completed and the reports are available for public feedback.
The Cross Island Line (CRL), which will connect the western and eastern parts of Singapore. The CRL will be the longest fully underground MRT line in Singapore, with a total of 29 stations. The construction of the CRL started in 2022, and the first phase is expected to be completed by 2029.
Another upcoming project is the Johor Bahru – Singapore Rapid Transit System (RTS) Link. In Singapore, it will be managed by SMRT Corporation, a leading multi-modal transport operator. The RTS Link will help to ease Causeway congestion, improve connectivity, foster people-to-people ties and generate shared economic and social benefits.
In addition to these new lines, several extensions to existing lines are also in the works. The Downtown Line, for instance, is set to be extended further eastward, connecting more residential areas to the city centre. The North-South and East-West Lines will also be extended to connect more areas to the city centre.
The SMRT is also working on upgrading the trains and stations by partnering with the Land Transport Authority (LTA). The new trains will be more spacious, energy-efficient, and equipped with the latest technology to improve passenger comfort and safety. The stations will also be upgraded with better lighting, ventilation, and safety features.
One of the critical projects is the replacement of the MRT signaling system. The current signaling system has been in use since the inception of the MRT system and is outdated. The new signaling system will be more reliable and efficient, reducing the frequency of breakdowns and delays.
In addition to these projects, the SMRT is also exploring the use of innovative technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI) and automation to improve the MRT system's efficiency and safety. Commenting on the same, SMRT CEO, Ngien Hoon Ping, said: “Our trains on our North-South, East-West Lines (NSEWL) and Circle Line (CCL) have continued to achieve more than one million Mean Kilometres Between Failure (MKBF). Our Bukit Panjang Light Rail Transit (BPLRT) has exceeded its MKBF target of 100,000 train km while undergoing network renewal. We are also working closely with LTA and system suppliers to prepare for a smooth opening of Stage 3 of the new Thomson-East Coast Line (TEL).”
The future of the Singapore MRT system is bright and exciting with ambitious expansion plans and upcoming projects. The government's commitment to investing in public transportation infrastructure is evident, with a focus on improving connectivity, reducing travel time, and enhancing the passenger experience. The implementation of new technologies and innovative design concepts will help make the MRT system more efficient, comfortable, and sustainable. With these plans in place, the Singapore MRT system is poised to continue being a world-class public transportation system that benefits both residents and visitors alike. As the city-state continues to grow and evolve, the MRT system will play an integral role in shaping its future.
About the Author
May Foo is a professor at a leading university in Singapore. With years of experience and a wealth of knowledge, May enjoys sharing her views on a wide range of topics related to her field. May is also an avid writer and speaker, who regularly contributes to scholarly journals and presents at conferences around the world. Her work has been recognised and awarded by numerous organisations, and she is committed to making a positive impact on the world through her research, teaching, and advocacy.
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