Opening of a 19.6km (12-mile) metro extension in China’s capital Beijing on 31 December capped a month that saw more than 150km (93 miles) of metro expansion across the country, with massive expansion continuing throughout January.
The new Beianhe – Xiyuan line 16 adds ten stations to Beijing’s more than 550km (340-mile) metro system. When complete, the line will run south from Xiyuan to Wanping Town and total nearly 50km (31 miles), with 29 stations. The CNY47.4bn (EUR6.5bn) line is being constructed under a Public Private Partnership, with operation for 30 years by Beijing MTR Corporation, a joint venture between MTR Corporation, Beijing Capital Group and Beijing Infrastructure Investment Corporation.
Dr Jacob Kam, Managing Director Operations and Mainland Business of MTR Corporation (which in December also extended operations in its home territory of Hong Kong), said: “We are honoured to extend our safe, reliable and convenient metro service to commuters in Beijing.”
Elsewhere in China, the last day of 2016 also saw the opening of an extension to line six of the metro in Tianjin, from Nancuiping to Changhong Gonyuan; in addition to the section that opened earlier in the year, this takes line 6 to 26km (16 miles) with 24 stops. In Wuhan, two new metro lines opened on 28 December. Line 2 runs between Jinyintan and the International Airport, and line 6 (36km/22 miles) connects Jinyinhu Park and the Dongfeng Motor Corporation factory – trial operation started on an extension at the southern end of line 2 (26 mile/42km) on 12 January. Wuhan is the home of Dongfeng, one of China’s ‘big three’ automobile makers.
Guangzhou’s Guangfo metro expanded 7km (four miles) from Kuiqi Lu to Xinchengdong on 28 December, the same day a 17km (11-mile) expansion of line 6 opened between Changban and Xiangxue. Also new was the first 19km (12-mile) of line 7, from Guangzhou South station to High Education Mega Centre South.
In Chongqing, metro line 3 (monorail) was extended from Bijin to Jurenba on 28 December, with an initial section set to open in 2018, while in Nanning 21km (13 miles) of metro line 1 (Nanhu to Shibu), and in Hefei the first section of metro running 25km (16 miles) between the station and Jiulianwei opened on the same day.
Kunming saw metro line 1 extended by 4.7km (2.9 miles) from Chunrong Street to South station on 26 December, and by 15.1km (9.4 miles) north from Sanchajie to Xiangfeng on 6 January. Trial operations to line 1 extensions began on 12 January. Meanwhile on 18 December, Qingdao saw a 13km (eight-mile) southern extension open to become its second phase of the city’s first metro line (line 3). The first section of metro line 3 was opened on 26 January, 5.3k (3.3 miles) from an interchange with line 1 to Changxianglu via West railway station. The line will form part of a 37.6km (23.4-mile) circular line set to complete in 2022.
A consortium led by CRRC has been awarded a 15-year PPP contract to build Qingdao’s metro line 4. The first phase of the 33.8km (21-mile) east-west line, was opened on 18 January, worked by 29 six-car trains supplied by CRRC Nanjing Puzhen with Alstom traction equipment. The complete underground line is due to open in December 2020.