Hanoi plans metro line extensions

By Doan Loan, Hoai Thu   October 22, 2019 | 11:29 pm PT
Hanoi plans metro line extensions
A train of Hanoi's Cat Linh - Ha Dong metro line runs on track on a pilot basis. Photo by VnExpress/Giang Huy.
Hanoi is studying the extension of its first metro line from 14 km to 34 km, helping the city better connect with its satellite urban areas.

According to the plans laid out in a report submitted to the National Assembly Tuesday, the first metro line, originally planned to run from Cat Linh Station in downtown Dong Da District to the Yen Nghia Station in the southwestern Ha Dong District, may be extended to Xuan Mai Town, also southwest of Hanoi.

The Hanoi authorities are also considering extending the second metro line, currently planned to run 35.2 km between Noi Bai Airport and Ha Dong District. The extension will run 9 km from Noi Bai Airport to Soc Son, a northern outskirts district of the city.

The city's third metro line, set to run 12.5 km from Nhon in the western district of Nam Tu Liem to the Hanoi Railway Station, may also be extended 30 km to Son Tay, a district-level town on the western fringe of the capital city.

The city is also looking at building a number of monorail lines to better exploit the entire urban railway system in the capital city.  

Work on the Cat Linh - Ha Dong metro line began in 2011 and was originally scheduled for completion in 2013. But several hurdles, including loan disbursement issues with China that were only resolved in December 2017, stalled it for years.

The metro eventually entered the testing phase in March with all 13 cars carrying out trial runs on both lines. The ministry wanted commercial operations to begin at the end of April, but this deadline too was missed.

"The Cat Linh - Ha Dong urban railway has largely been completed. However, due to some internal and external causes, the project has not been put into operation," the report said.

The Cat Linh - Ha Dong urban railway, which is over 99 percent complete, was originally estimated to cost $552.86 million, but this has ballooned to more than $868 million.

According to the government’s report, Hanoi plans to build eight urban railway lines in the central city area with a combined length of 305 km, including three monorail segments, in its development plan for 2030 orienting towards 2050.

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