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The New Skytrain (continued for 2019)


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The Department of Railways has announced that finally the PPP tenders for the next batch of extensions to the soon to be opened SRT Dark Red and SRT Light Red lines will be out in April. The SRT planned these 2 lines back in 2005.......The Dark Red line will be 87kms when it is finally completed (sometime in 2050 at the current construction rate!)

History
It is important to note that that 2 of these extensions (Dark Red to Tham Uni & south ext to Hua lumphong) were approved in 2016. Tenders were scheduled for Sept 2018 but then delayed until later in 2019. Afterwards, in July 2019 the Cabinet referred all extensions for a review with a view to do PPP tenders in early 2020 - much to the annoyance of the SRT.

SRT Light Red eastern ext to Hua Mark
I've mentioned this numerous time but the extension of the SRT Light Red line from Bang Sue to Hua Mark along the current ARL route was always a stupid plan as it duplicates the Cityline service and means building a whole new viaduct and adjacent stations to the ARL stations. However, given the recent policy change for the ARL become a part of the Eastern HSR line it may have some merit, but it stills means duplication of services.

SRT Light Red Sriraj/Thonburi Spur line
The short spur line between Taling Chan and Thonburi/Sriraj station (Kanchanaburi services depart from here) is also stupid. The original plan 10-15 years ago was for the MRT Orange line to run along this route and terminate at Taling Chan. However, the SRT objected as they didn't want to 'lose' control of the corridor so this section was swapped from Orange to Light Red. It is still unclear how the SRT plans to operate the Spur line but most likely it will be Taling Chan to Sriraj only. 

The priority should be to build following exts first - hopefully by 2024:
1) 10km ext Rangsit to Thammasat Uni - approved in 2016 and some of which is built north of Rangsit,
2) Bang Sue to Hua Lumphong - approved in 2016 (requires a belowground section past the palace)
3) Taling Chan to Salaya - was also to be tendered in 2018

 

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Some photos on N9 today.   Masses of man (and woman) power being thrown at it.   Opening scheduled for August 11th.          

From tomorrow 7 September, MRT Blue services will operate as a through service on a normal frequency. Still operating only from 7am to 9pm from Hua Lumphong to Bang Wah.[ So no more changing at H

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On 2/16/2021 at 11:49 AM, Lakegeneve said:

(sometime in 2050 at the current construction rate!)

 

That soon?

 

My first job in Thailand, back in 2005, was on an early iteration of the Red Line.

 

Since then it's had more than a few re-thinks including at least 2 changes of gauge (and a brief foray into dual gauge).

 

All good fun and it pays the bills.

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2 hours ago, Crossy said:

 

That soon?

 

My first job in Thailand, back in 2005, was on an early iteration of the Red Line.

 

Since then it's had more than a few re-thinks including at least 2 changes of gauge (and a brief foray into dual gauge).

 

All good fun and it pays the bills.

 

I have HVAC product in much of the system. Built the product for the original BTS line at the plant in California. then set up a plant here to build the product for the MRT.

 

Good times

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On 2/12/2021 at 2:57 PM, Lakegeneve said:

BSR announced last October that both the MRT Pink line (Minburi - PK 30 to Govt Complex - PK12) and MRT Yellow line (Y23 to Y17) would partially open in October 2021 with both lines then opening in full un June 2022. However, more recently there has been the suggestion that rolling stock delivery and COVID related delays may push this back.

 

Let's see what the situation is by June.

 

At the Ratchada/Ladprao end there still looks like a lot to be done with the yellow line, pillars and rails are still going up, stations still just shells with no exits built yet. I'm not surprised any 2021 opening will only be at the Samrong end.

 

As a footnote. I can't remember if BTS use the same construction firm as MRT but that new St Louis station on Silom line went up super fast. It caught me off guard when the train stopped there last week, steel frame for the roof was still going up before Christmas. 

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1 hour ago, FarangryBirds said:

 

At the Ratchada/Ladprao end there still looks like a lot to be done with the yellow line, pillars and rails are still going up, stations still just shells with no exits built yet. I'm not surprised any 2021 opening will only be at the Samrong end.

 

As a footnote. I can't remember if BTS use the same construction firm as MRT but that new St Louis station on Silom line went up super fast. It caught me off guard when the train stopped there last week, steel frame for the roof was still going up before Christmas. 

Samrong end is opening first as that is the end where the depot is located (near Y17). It gives the BSR an opportunity to iron out kinks before the full line opens. This line has basically been planned for 30 years (in previous master plans - as heavy rail) so it has been a long time coming....

 

BMA contracted the firm not BTS

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On 12/25/2020 at 12:03 PM, Lakegeneve said:

The SRT has been testing the line since October. It is a completely different SRT commuter system to the ARL (which was built for eventual 10 car operations) so probably not worth comparing. In any event, the ARL will become part of the Eastern HSR line with new rolling stock. The gauges are also different.

 

These sets are made by Mitsubishi and Hitachi, they are the first lot of Japanese rolling stock to be used on any of the new BKK lines.

 

The SRT ordered 15 6 cars sets for the Dark Red line to Rangsit and 10 4 car sets for the Light Red line to Taling Chan. Of course the SRT only ordered these in mid 2016 when the line was originally due to open in late 2016..........(you can blame the 2014 coup for some of that delay but most of it is on the SRT as they started the bidding process in 2010!).

 

Remember, the Dark Red line will eventually be some 87kms long when done (in a few decades at this rate) and the 2 lines will carry nearly 1m pax a day so it is good that they started with 6 car sets.

 

 

The SRT on Wednesday confirmed that the SRT Dark Red line and SRT Light Red line will commence free trial operations from 26 March.

 

Full commercial operations will commence on 28 July.

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9 hours ago, Lakegeneve said:

Yes, all delivered for both.

 

Also, all sets delivered for the SRT Dark & Light Red lines. The only outstanding orders are the monorail rolling stock for the MRT Pink and MRT Yellow lines. Deliveries are behind schedule.

 

The next batch of rolling stock will be for the MRT Orange line in a couple of years once an operator is awarded - which will probably be related to who wins the MRT Orange line western extension tender.

Curious on the orange line.  After it comes out of the ground and becomes elevated on Ramkhamhaeng the elevated section looks pretty much complete (structurally anyway).  How's the underground part doing?   Are they still tunnelling or is that all finished?

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On 3/24/2021 at 9:01 PM, josephbloggs said:

Curious on the orange line.  After it comes out of the ground and becomes elevated on Ramkhamhaeng the elevated section looks pretty much complete (structurally anyway).  How's the underground part doing?   Are they still tunnelling or is that all finished?

From the Orange Line's facebook updates, they are often celebrating tunnel boring machines breaking into stations, so looks like tunneling is still going on together with station work, Stations from the blue line towards Ramkhamhaeng 12 is more done, so maybe east of Ramkhamhang is where the boring is still going on

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There’s still a lot of work going inside Thailand Cultural Centre station on the blue line, if memory serves, this is where the Orange line will interchange. Previous to the works inside the station, there was always a placeholder showing where the orange line would meet.

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7 hours ago, FarangryBirds said:

There’s still a lot of work going inside Thailand Cultural Centre station on the blue line, if memory serves, this is where the Orange line will interchange. Previous to the works inside the station, there was always a placeholder showing where the orange line would meet.

I used to get off at this station for work a couple of years ago.  The station is much bigger than others and always had a (I assume) life size model of two trains coming out of tunnels - presumably orange line trains.  This was just in an otherwise oversized hall. So definitely well planned for many years.

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On 3/26/2021 at 5:25 AM, digbeth said:

From the Orange Line's facebook updates, they are often celebrating tunnel boring machines breaking into stations, so looks like tunneling is still going on together with station work, Stations from the blue line towards Ramkhamhaeng 12 is more done, so maybe east of Ramkhamhang is where the boring is still going on

Yes updates there. ALso on the MRTA website, https://www.mrta.co.th/en/news/information/tbm2-breaks-through-ramkhamhaeng-12-station/

and the general MRTA FB page, eg this one from 9 March for TBM 3 breaking through to Ram station from Hua Mark station,  https://www.facebook.com/MRTA.PR/photos/pcb.2741706659379384/2741705356046181/

 

But as digbeth says, the MRTA Ornage line FB page is the best for constant updates.

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On 3/29/2021 at 12:32 AM, josephbloggs said:

I used to get off at this station for work a couple of years ago.  The station is much bigger than others and always had a (I assume) life size model of two trains coming out of tunnels - presumably orange line trains.  This was just in an otherwise oversized hall. So definitely well planned for many years.

Yes, it has an interchange level between the concourse and platform levels as it was always planned as an interchange station. Of course built before the Orange line was extended from Ram to Miniburi (absorbing the previous MRT Brown line) and before the western alignment was changed from Victory and Ratchatewi rd to Pratunam and Phetchaburi rd. 

 

Some advanced design and planning there which is unusual in the BKK mass transit context

 

"Life size model" might be a stretch but I do have a picture somewhere of the outline of the tunnel rings with train façade that were on the eastern wall of that level. See if I can track it down.

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4 minutes ago, Lakegeneve said:

Yes, it has an interchange level between the concourse and platform levels as it was always planned as an interchange station. Of course built before the Orange line was extended from Ram to Miniburi (absorbing the previous MRT Brown line) and before the western alignment was changed from Victory and Ratchatewi rd to Pratunam and Phetchaburi rd. 

 

Some advanced design and planning there which is unusual in the BKK mass transit context

 

"Life size model" might be a stretch but I do have a picture somewhere of the outline of the tunnel rings with train façade that were on the eastern wall of that level. See if I can track it down.

Here you go.

Screenshot 2021-03-30 at 11.12.28 AM.png

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On 3/23/2021 at 10:30 AM, FarangryBirds said:

Now that the Green and Blue lines have both completed their extensions (for now). Have both lines taken delivery of all the extra trains they put in for?

On 3/24/2021 at 11:38 AM, Lakegeneve said:

Yes, all delivered for both.

 

Also, all sets delivered for the SRT Dark & Light Red lines. The only outstanding orders are the monorail rolling stock for the MRT Pink and MRT Yellow lines. Deliveries are behind schedule.

 

The next batch of rolling stock will be for the MRT Orange line in a couple of years once an operator is awarded - which will probably be related to who wins the MRT Orange line western extension tender.

One thing I neglected to mention is that for the MRT Purple line even though BEM ordered the Japanese rolling stock as the operator of the line, the MRTA ended up purchasing the trains as BEM didn't have enough money to do so esp with lower than expected pax rates - given the missing link for the 1st year! (Even though the section from Bang Sue to Taopoon was part of the Purple line contract)

 

Thus, MRTA owns the Purple line rolling stock and leases it to BEM. It will be interesting to see what happens with the MRT Purple line southern ext operator tender comes out - tender is about to be issued for construction. 

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11 hours ago, Lakegeneve said:

Yes, it has an interchange level between the concourse and platform levels as it was always planned as an interchange station. Of course built before the Orange line was extended from Ram to Miniburi (absorbing the previous MRT Brown line) and before the western alignment was changed from Victory and Ratchatewi rd to Pratunam and Phetchaburi rd. 

 

Some advanced design and planning there which is unusual in the BKK mass transit context

 

"Life size model" might be a stretch but I do have a picture somewhere of the outline of the tunnel rings with train façade that were on the eastern wall of that level. See if I can track it down.

 

There's always been a master plan with contingencies, but even though the interchange level was built for at Cultural Centre station,  I remembered there was talk of moving the orange line interchange to Rama 9 instead until the last minute until finalization of the route around 2014 due to resistance from communities that will be displaced on the west section of the orange lines, plus there's a big office block on Rama 9 that will benefit.

 

In other news, the 'missing link' between the yellow line and green line from Ratchada/Ladprao to Ratchayothin is still heavily opposed by the MRTA who expects passengers to connect by walking underground, board their trains for 1 stop, get off and walk up to connect to the BTS and demanding a cut/damages if the missing link is built. It's like seeing the early days of london undergrounds where competing operators fight with each other for passengers. 

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