MTR’s Hong Kong Express Rail Link Enters Final Preparation Phase

MTR Corporation, the operator of the future Elizabeth Line, has moved one step closer to completing work on a nine-year, £7.67bn high-speed rail project in Hong Kong.

MTR has announced it has commenced trial operations on the 26km Hong Kong Express Rail Link (XRL), connecting Hong Kong with the high-speed rail network in mainland China.

Hong Kong Express Rail Link
Photo Credit: MTR

MTR’s Hong Kong Express Rail Link

The latest milestone was marked by a Main Works Completion Ceremony at the newly-built West Kowloon station, with representatives from the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region and MTR Corporation. The UK Government’s Northern Powerhouse Minister Jake Berry was also taken through the project during a meeting with senior MTR representatives earlier in the day.

XRL is now over 99% completed and services will commence on the high-speed rail line later this year. In overseeing the project from start to finish, MTR has used its expertise in infrastructure delivery to integrate the new track into the existing Chinese high-speed network and introduce new rolling stock to the line.

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Including the Hong Kong Express Rail Link, MTR has simultaneously been constructing five major rail infrastructure projects in Hong Kong.

Jeremy Long, CEO European Business, MTR Corporation, said:

“MTR Corporation has an acknowledged reputation around the world as a leading developer of rail infrastructure projects, and the completion of the Hong Kong Express Rail Link will represent a major achievement. Responsibility for design, strategic planning and construction of new stations, overhead power lines, tunnels and bridges have all fallen under MTR Corporation’s management during this process, and the experience we have gained from this project can readily be applied to similar projects in international markets.”

Carrie Lam, Chief Executive of HKSAR, said:

“While the completion of the Project is approaching, it is important to remember that it has been a joint effort, with great professionalism and a spirit of striving for excellence being shown by the engineering teams and regulating departments involved, which together have overcome the challenges they faced. With the considerable time and effort invested, we are now in a position to witness their achievements today, and I would like to express my heartfelt thanks to the colleagues of various government departments and the MTR team for their endeavours.”

Professor Frederick Ma, Chairman of the MTR Corporation, said:

“We are thrilled to see this project coming to fruition. The construction of this cross-boundary railway connection has never been an easy feat. We have overcome various challenges during the past few years and it is exciting to see that the railway is ready to proceed to its trial operations. In the coming months, we will continue to make our best endeavours to get ready for commissioning the rail service this September.”

Original press release credit: MTR

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