Light Rail Transit (Singapore)

The light metro component of Singapore's rail network

The Light Rail Transit (LRT) is a light rail system used in Singapore. It acts as a feeder service to the Mass Rapid Transit (MRT) network. The LRT started operation on 6 November 1999 with the Bukit Panjang LRT to Choa Chu Kang route. As of 2017, the system consists of three lines with 43 stations.

Overview change

Singapore already had a good MRT system when the Land Transport Authority (LTA) decided to add the LRT. This is because it is cheaper and easier to build LRTs. This new system would decrease traffic jams but without the huge cost and effort needed to build more MRT lines and stations. Construction began in 1996 with the Bukit Panjang to Choa Chu Kang route. The service first ran on 6 November 1999.

The LRT is also used in the Sengkang and Punggol areas. Construction began in January 2000 for both the East Loop and West Loop of Sengkang LRT and Punggol LRT. The Sengkang East Loop was opened on 18 January 2003. The Sengkang West Loop and Punggol East Loop were opened on 29 January 2005.

Further LRT line projects were cancelled in 2008 as there was not enough space to build them over the ground[source?].

Timeline change

Routes change

Singapore's LRT network is made up of 3 lines with 43 stations.

The Bukit Panjang LRT opened on 6 November 1999 and is operated by SMRT Trains. The line is in the shape of a single loop and connects with the MRT North South Line at Choa Chu Kang Station and the Downtown Line at Bukit Panjang.

The Sengkang LRT Line opened on 18 January 2003 while the Punggol LRT Line opened on 29 January 2005. These lines are operated by SBS Transit. Each line consists of an East and West loop, with each loop of a line meeting at either Sengkang or Punggol, and both lines being joined with tracks running parallel to the North East Line below.

Rolling Stock change

The LRT lines are served by Automated People Mover rolling stocks, which were initially in a one-car formation. Due to higher passenger usage, most of the cars were joined together. The Bukit Panjang LRT Line started having 2-car formations when there was enough C801A trains ready for service, which the Sengkang and Punggol LRT lines started having 2-car formations around 2015. In 2-car formations, passengers cannot walk between cars, and people can only go to the other car by departing at a station and boarding the other carriage before the train leaves.

A total of four rolling stock have been introduced on the LRT, namely the:

Safety change

On November 24, 2015, authorities announced that they would install platform barriers to reduce the risk of passengers falling onto the tracks. They to be installed at all existing LRT stations except Ten Mile Junction LRT Station, which already had platform screen doors. Ten Mile Junction was the only LRT station with air conditioning, and the doors had been installed to keep the cold air in and so save electricity. The barriers were installed between 2016 and 2018. Installation was completed first at Choa Chu Kang and Bukit Panjang stations because more passengers used them than the other stations. The platform barriers were not installed with moving platform doors, possibly to reduce costs.

Train Headways change

Trains usually arrive every 2.2 minutes on the Bukit Panjang LRT Line along Choa Chu Kang LRT Station to Bukit Panjang LRT Station while it is around 4.4 minutes along Petir LRT Station to Senja LRT Station. The arrival time of the next two trains will be displayed at all stations. For Sengkang LRT Line and Punggol LRT Line, no specific train timings were stated, but the timing before the train arrives can be seen at Fernvale LRT Station only.

At Ten Mile Junction LRT Station, trains arrive only every 20 minutes, possibly due to low passenger usage.

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