The MTR’s South Island Line (East) will start running on December 28, the MTR Corporation has confirmed.

The new line connects Admiralty station to the southern part of Hong Kong Island. New parts of the Admiralty station, Ocean Park, Wong Chuk Hang, Lei Tung and South Horizons will be brought online, with an estimated 11 minutes of travel time between Admiralty and South Horizons.

New Southern Line stations.

The corporation said that Admiralty station – known for its huge traffic flow – will double in size to accommodate the new line.

The MTRC chair previously said that the line could be delayed by up to three months, due to construction difficulties at Admiralty station. Last month, the MTRC said it would be open before the end of the year, without giving an exact date.

The MTRC said the opening of the line means that the underground rail service has now extended to all 18 districts of Hong Kong.

New driver-less trains

Operations Director Adi Lau Tin-shing said that the interval between trains – currently three minutes – could be improved in the future. He also said that the driver-less system employed on the line was a mature one used internationally.

Lincoln Leong Kwok-kuen, the CEO of the MTRC, said December 28 was chosen as it was a normal day between two major holidays, that the traffic was expected to be less severe.

The corporation said it will increase personnel assigned to the line to serve travellers, and asked passengers to forgive any inconvenience experienced in the early days of operation.

Kris Cheng

Kris Cheng is a Hong Kong journalist with an interest in local politics. His work has been featured in Washington Post, Public Radio International, Hong Kong Economic Times and others. He has a BSSc in Sociology from the Chinese University of Hong Kong. Kris is HKFP's Editorial Director.