Circle MRT Line
Circle MRT Line
The Circle Line is coloured orange on system maps.
|System||Mass Rapid Transit (Singapore)|
|Opening||28 May 2009 (Stage 3)
17 April 2010 (Stage 1 and 2)
8 October 2011 (Stage 4 and 5, except Bukit Brown)
14 January 2012 (Circle Line Extension)
|Owner||Land Transport Authority|
|Operator(s)||SMRT Trains (SMRT Corporation)|
|Rolling stock||Alstom Metropolis C830, Alstom Metropolis C830C|
|Line length||35.7 km (22.2 mi)|
|Track gauge||1,435 mm (4 ft 8 1⁄2 in) standard gauge|
The Circle Line (CCL) is Singapore's fourth Mass Rapid Transit line, and named after one of the London Underground lines, with its same name, from Circle line in the UK. This underground line is 35.7 kilometres (22.2 mi) long with 31 stations (excluding Bukit Brown) and is fully automatically operated. It takes about one hour to travel from one end to the other. The line is coloured yellow on the rail map.
As the name implies, the line is an orbital circle route linking all radial routes leading to the city. It also covers many parts of the Central Area. From Promenade, the line branches with one branch terminating at Dhoby Ghaut and the other terminating at Marina Bay. Transfers to the North South Line are provided at Bishan, Dhoby Ghaut and Marina Bay, East West Line at Paya Lebar and Buona Vista, and North East Line at Dhoby Ghaut, Serangoon and HarbourFront. The Downtown Line interchanges with the Circle Line at Bayfront and Promenade and future sections of the Downtown Line will interchange at Botanic Gardens and MacPherson. The future Thomson Line will interchange with the Circle Line at Caldecott and Marina Bay.
The Circle Line is the first medium capacity line in Singapore. As a medium capacity line, each Circle Line train has only three cars instead of the six-car configuration as seen on current MRT lines. Half a million people are expected to use the Circle Line each day. The line reduces travelling time for commuters by allowing them to shorten trips between north to east or north to west and vice versa, bypassing busy interchange like City Hall and Raffles Place.
On 8 October 2011, the Circle Line became fully operational to commemorate its operator SMRT's 24th Anniversary for Rail Services since the company's establishment in 1987.
Plans for the Circle Line date back to the 1980s. The then Minister for Communications and Information, Dr Yeo Ning Hong stated that such a system "would be feasible when the population reaches four million."
In the 1990s, the Circle Line was first known as the Marina Line. The Marina Line, first planned in 1998 was initially planned as a 12-station underground line, starting from Chinatown and Dhoby Ghaut via the National Stadium to either Kallang or Paya Lebar station. However, the Chinatown leg was later truncated and was reduced to 6 stations up to Stadium station. On the other hand, a further extension towards Upper Paya Lebar was added. Eventually, the Marina Line ended up as an inner circular line. Stations in Circle Line that were a part of the original Marina Line plans include Dhoby Ghaut, Bras Basah, Esplanade, Promenade, Nicoll Highway and Stadium. Also, the part of the Marina Line from Chinatown to Promenade is now part of the Downtown Line.
Originally scheduled to be opened from 2006 and fully opened in 2010, with an estimated cost of S$6.7 billion, the Nicoll Highway collapse caused the construction of the Circle Line to be delayed to 2009, with full opening by 2011 (excluding the Marina Bay Extension), at an escalated cost of nearly S$10 billion. Due to the re-alignment of the Nicoll Highway Station to a new location, the station is only two-thirds the size of the original plan before the collapse, and located 100 metres (330 ft) away from the highway collapse site. The decision was also made to open both Caldecott, and Haw Par Villa stations (previously Thomson and West Coast), initially planned as shell stations, together with the whole line, leaving only Bukit Brown station closed.
Stage 3, a 5 kilometres (3.1 mi) five-station segment stretching from Bartley to Marymount, was the first section of the line opened, on May 28, 2009. Initial ridership on this section was lower than estimated, at 32,000 passengers per day (ppd) instead of the estimated 55,000 ppd. Tunneling works for the entire line were completed on August 17, 2009. Stages 1 and 2 started operations on April 17, 2010, Stages 4 and 5 on October 8, 2011, and the final Circle Line Extension on January 14, 2012. The line was also fully completed in October 2011, to commemorate operator SMRT's 24th anniversary.
On 17 January 2013, the Land Transport Authority announced 'Circle Line Stage 6' which will close the circle, running between Marina Bay and HarbourFront via Keppel. It will be a 4 km extension and is planned to be completed by 2025.
Nicoll Highway collapse
On 20 April 2004, a section of the tunnel being built for the Circle Line collapsed, apparently when a retaining wall used in the tunnel's construction gave way. This occurred near what was planned to become the Nicoll Highway Station on the Circle line, not far from the Merdeka Bridge. The accident left a collapse zone 150 metres (490 ft) wide, 100 metres (330 ft) long, and 30 metres (98 ft) deep. Four workers were killed, with three more injured.
A criminal inquiry found the main contractor Nishimatsu Construction Company and joint venture partner firm Lum Chang Construction Company and their officers, as well as key Land Transport Authority officers responsible for the collapse. Several other officers and subcontractors were reprimanded and issued warnings in connection with the accident.
As a result of this accident, the first phase of the Circle Line, previously scheduled to open in 2008, was completed in 2010 instead. The affected station has been shifted about 100 metres (330 ft) away from the accident site and is now located at Republic Avenue.
This accident had also resulted in stricter safety regulations for the construction of all future MRT lines. The shifting of the Nicoll Highway Station also meant it can no longer serve as a terminus for the Bukit Timah Line, partially influencing the creation of the current Downtown Line.
On 16 August 2007, the Building and Construction Authority (BCA) issued a stop-work order and revoked the contractor's tunnelling permit after a 7 metres (23 ft) stretch of two lanes sank about 20 centimetres (7.9 in), close to the junction of Telok Blangah Road and Alexandra Road in the evening, resulting in a halting of tunnelling works.
A section of the road above a construction site near Holland Road caved in on the morning of 24 May 2008, creating a massive hole. The hole, directly in front of two private houses along Cornwall Gardens Road, measured 8 by 7 metres and was 3 metres deep. No one was injured, but the road was temporarily closed to traffic.
On 20 September 2011, a power fault disrupted train services on all 16 stations on the Circle Line. The four hours delay left thousands of commuters stranded during rush-hour. It was reported that leaks and a damaged cable along the Circle Line were the caused of the disruption. The disruption started at about 5.30 am. Train services were gradually restored from 8am and all services were restored just before 10am. Dakota and Mountbatten stations were the last two to resume operations. Investigations were carried out. It was later found that a faulty cable beneath the platform level at Dakota Station caused a power fault on Tuesday morning that affected train services at all 16 stations on the Circle Line. 27,000 passengers were affected by the disruption during the four hours delay, with bus bridging services plying the Circle Line route.
The rolling stock consists of 40 Alstom Metropolis C830 trains running in three-car formation. They are stabled at Kim Chuan depot, the world's largest underground depot. 24 additional Alstom Metropolis C830C trains will arrive starting in 2015.
- Trains from Marina Bay to Stadium are extended to HarbourFront during peak hours.
- Additional train service runs across the whole line during lunch hours from 12pm to 2pm on weekdays (excluding public holidays). Trains run at 5 minute intervals during these times, down from the usual 7 minutes.
- "ALSTOM chosen for the world’s longest fully automated metro line in Singapore". railway-technology.com. 2002-02-20.
- Circle Line could cost taxpayers $10 billion
- "Circle Line will exceed $6.7b budget" Christopher Tan, The Straits Times, 15 September 2007
- LTA completes final tunnelling work on Circle Line – Channel NewsAsia
- Breaking News | The Straits Times
- Train crowding to ease with launch of full Circle Line: Minister Lui | SingaporeScene – Yahoo! News Singapore
- "TWO NEW RAIL LINES AND THREE NEW EXTENSIONS TO EXPAND RAIL NETWORK BY 2030". Land Transport Authority. January 17, 2013.
- "Stop-work order at Telok Blangah site is fourth this year on $6.7b MRT project" T. Rajan, The Straits Times, 22 August 2007
- "Road above Circle Line construction site caves in" CNA Live, Channel NewsAsia, 24 May 2008
- "Leaks, damaged cable cause of 4-hour delay on Circle Line". The Straits Times. 29 September 2011. Retrieved 19 October 2011.
- "Thousands affected by Circle Line disruption". Channel News Asia. 20 September 2011. Retrieved 19 October 2011.
- "Faulty cable led to Circle Line disruption". Channel News Asia. 20 September 2011. Retrieved 19 October 2011.
- "Call for thorough probe on Circle Line disruption". Channel News Asia. 22 September 2011. Retrieved 19 October 2011.
- "Marina Bay, Bayfront stations open; more relief for commuters soon". Straits Times. Retrieved 2012-01-14.
- Tuas West Extension Groundbreaking Ceremony Speech (Speech). Land Transport Authority. 4 May 2012.
- AWARD OF ELECTRICAL & MECHANICAL SYSTEMS CONTRACT 830 FOR THE MARINA LINE
- "LTA and SMRT Award Contracts for New Trains and Re-Signalling Project". Land Transport Authority. 1 February 2012. Retrieved 16 November 2013.
- "Alstom to supply 34 Metropolis trains and signaling upgrade to Singapore metro". 3 February 2012. Retrieved 16 November 2013.
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