- POSTED: 21 Dec 2013 11:10
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Commuters can expect shorter waiting times of less than four minutes during peak hours when the Downtown Line rail network is fully operational. For now, waiting time is four minutes during peak period, and five minutes for non-peak period.
SINGAPORE: Commuters can expect shorter waiting times of less than four minutes during peak hours when the Downtown Line rail network is fully operational.
For now, waiting time is four minutes during peak period, and five minutes for non-peak period.
Authorities will compress train frequencies with the completion of Stage 2 in 2016 and Stage 3 in 2017.
Stage 1 was officially launched on Saturday. Commuters can ride without paying from Sunday till 1 January.
The launch marked the start of plans to double the rail network to 360km by 2030.
With stations cutting through bustling places, authorities will progressively add more trains to the line as the network's three stages gradually open.
A review of train frequencies will be done with the completion of Stages 2 and 3.
The entire network will be served by 88 trains.
Downtown Line 1 currently uses six out of the 88 trains.
The rail network is expected to ease high traffic in the city. The line runs through some of the busiest corridors, like Bugis and Chinatown.
Congestion at interchange stations like Dhoby Ghaut and Raffles Place is also expected to ease with the new network.
Dr Lily Neo, MP for Tanjong Pagar GRC, said: "Residents will benefit from this opening of the Downtown Line. And on top of that, of course the businesses in Chinatown will benefit from it too."
Seng Han Thong, deputy chairman of Government Parliamentary Committee for Transport, said: "Many office workers will have another option: to take public transport. And once they realise that (public transport) really brings them convenience, they will change their travelling (habits)."
Launching Downtown Line 1 on Saturday, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said investing more resources into maintaining train infrastructure is paying off.
He said service standards and reliability are improving, with fewer breakdowns, even though interruptions occur occasionally.
Beyond that, Mr Lee urged Singaporeans to continue being gracious as public transport improves.
He said: "The trains, the station platforms, the shops and the stations, all these are infrastructure which we are providing. But it also depends on how passengers and commuters behave, queuing up to get into the train, giving way to let people come out from the train first before you try to get on, and making sure that you take care of the elderly, the pregnant ladies, people who need to sit down."
Mr Lee noted that the practice of orderly queuing is catching on in Singapore, and said it shows good social graces, making commuting a smoother experience.