TAIWAN: Taichung Mass Rapid Transit Corp’s first metro line opened for revenue services on April 25, having been delayed from last year.
The NT$59·3bn Green Line runs 16·7 km from the high speed rail station in Wurih southwest of the city to Beitun station on Taiwan Railway Administration’s 1 067 mm gauge West Coast main line in the northeast. The line has 18 stations, with 15·9 km of the route being elevated and the rest at grade.
Kawasaki Heavy Industries has supplied 18 two-car driverless trainsets, with half being assembled locally by Taiwan Rolling Stock Co. The stainless steel bodied trainsets are 44·3 m long, have a capacity of 536 passengers, take power from a 750 V DC third rail and have a maximum speed of 75 km/h.
The development of a three line network was approved by the national government on November 23 2004, and the cities of Taichung and Taipei signed a joint development contract in December 2007. Construction of the Green Line officially began in 2009, although work only got underway a year later.
A month of trial running with passengers began on November 16 last year, but was suspended when a coupling broke and the opening which had been scheduled for December 19 was postponed while investigations were undertaken.
Extensions are planned at both ends of Green Line, adding 5·5 km and 2·5 km respectively.