THIS MONTH is due to see the opening of the final four stations on Seoul metro Line 6. These remained uncompleted when services began on the final section of the line on December 15. Fitting out and commissioning of the four stations was delayed when contractor Shinhwa Construction went bankrupt in November. Construction of Line 6 has taken seven years, at a cost of 2500bn won.

The 38 km line starts at Tokbawi in the northwestern suburbs, loops through western and central parts of the city, and terminates at Ponghwasan in the northeast. A short section serving six stations at the eastern end has been in service for some time.

Services run from 05.30 to midnight, with headways of 4min at peak times and 6min off-peak. To mark the opening, Seoul Metro Rapid Transit Corp offered free tickets for the first three days. For the first three months, Line 6 will also host an eight-car trainset fitted out as a mobile art gallery, known as ’Culture in Motion: Digital Travels’.

  • January 1 saw the opening of the new Inchon International Airport, built on reclaimed land. Expected to handle 27 million passengers and 1·7 million tonnes of cargo per year, relieving Seoul’s Kimpo Airport, the new airport will be connected to the capital by a fast rail link under construction for opening in 2005. Serving Seoul main station, Susek and Kimpo Airport, the rail link will have interchanges to Seoul metro Lines 1 to 6 and Inchon Lines 1 and 2. It will then share a 4·4 km double-deck suspension bridge with the airport access road.