"Continuing to invest to upgrade our assets for the long-term is essential to keep the system functioning to the highest international standards..."
The Mass Transit Railway (MTR), the rapid transit railway network in Hong Kong is committing more than HKD$10 billion for asset renewal investments in this calendar year. MTR Corporation plans to invest around $7 billion to purchase 78 new eight-car trains with more modern operating systems and equipment as part of its long-term asset renewal strategy to sustain high quality railway service for passengers. Tenders for the replacement of 78 existing train sets have been returned and the assessment process is ongoing. This investment is together with the $3.3 billion contract signed in March to replace the signalling system for six commuter lines and the Airport Express to lift overall carrying capacity, major investments in the existing railway network committed this year is expected to be over $10 billion.
Speaking on the announcement of the investment, Dr Jacob Kam, Operations Director of MTR Corporation stated; “With the aim to provide more reliable and comfortable journeys for passengers, we will take this opportunity to introduce new operating systems and equipment to our train fleet. The new-generation train compartments will have a number of new features including an improved lighting system that will make the train saloons feel more spacious. As well, the new dynamic route map will be able to provide more information for passengers.”
“Continuing to invest to upgrade our assets for the long-term is essential to keep the system functioning to the highest international standards and to ensure that the community continues to enjoy safe, reliable and convenient services well into the future,” Dr Kam added.
MTR, which is now enjoying significant success aboard, including Stockholm and London, took the opportunity to also announce it has maintained 99.9% On-time Performance for First Four Months of 2015.
“Keeping our on-time performance at 99.9% is becoming more and more challenging. Since 2007, when the MTR and KCR system were merged, the amount of car-km we have operated in our train service has increased more than11% while passenger numbers have grown by 28%. With more people using our service, we understand more people will be affected when there are long delays so we are working towards providing more customer-focused and real time information to passengers to help them plan their onward journeys so that we can minimise any inconvenience caused,” said Dr Kam.