Many Chinese experts have yet to return to Vietnam for work due to the rapid spread of the Wuhan coronavirus, pushing back the date of the 20-day trial run of the Cat Linh-Ha Dong urban railway.
A train of the Cat Linh-Ha Dong urban railway system. The rapid spread of the Wuhan coronavirus has pushed back the date of the 20-day trial run of the Cat Linh-Ha Dong urban railway in Hanoi City
A representative of the Railway Project Management Unit, under the Ministry of Transport, on February 10 noted that as planned, on February 1, the project will start a 20-day operation run for inspection purposes, the local media reported.
However, over 100 Chinese experts have failed to return to Vietnam amid coronavirus fears, delaying the date of the trial operation of the railway, the representative said, adding that the Chinese experts are in charge of the trial operation.
Drivers and staff responsible for the planned trial run of the Cat Linh-Ha Dong urban railway in Hanoi City have been granted driving licenses and operation certificates. Vietnamese employees who had previously been trained to operate the urban railway are ready to participate in the trial operation.
During the 20-day test, the Chinese general contractor takes responsibility for verifying system safety and evaluating the capacity of all employees.
After being evaluated thoroughly, the project will be put into commercial operation if it is certified as safe.
The 13-kilometer Cat Linh-Ha Dong urban railway was designed to have 12 stations and one depot. The urban railway system runs from Cat Linh Station in downtown Dong Da District to the Yen Nghia Station southwest of Ha Dong District.
Elevated section of Hanoi’s French-funded metro line to be soon completed
Hanoi’s metro line 3 runs 8.5 kilometers on elevated tracks through eight stations and four kilometers underground through four stations.
The construction of the elevated section the Nhon – Hanoi Railway Station sky train, also known as Hanoi’s metro line 3, is being accelerated to put it into operation in April 2021, Kinh Te & Do Thi newspaper quoted a leader of the Hanoi Metropolitan Railway Board (MRB) as saying.
According to the MRB, the packages for the elevated section are in due progress. Specifically, the CP01 package has been completed 100%, the CP02 package has 71.3% of the volume fulfilled, the CP05 package has reached 58.22%.
Workers conduct three shifts per day at the Nhon - Hanoi Railway Station project. Photo: Ngoc Hai
Deputy Head of the MRB Le Trung Hieu affirmed that construction progress of the items related to electricity, information supplying and signaling will be ensured and the elevated section will become operational in April 2021.
"We will strive to bring the first trains to Vietnam in July to prepare for trial operation," Hieu said.
Under the plan, the elevated section of the metro line, which also include an underground section, will be put into operation first.
Immediately after Tet holiday, from February 3, construction of the Nhon – Hanoi Railway Station has resumed with three shifts per day, employing 836 people who are regularly present at the project.
In November, a Tunnel Boring Machine (TBM) will start digging the underground section.
Construction of this project was started on October 10, 2010. According to the MRB, the project’s first 8.5 km of the elevated tracks is set to be inaugurated in April 2021, then 4 km of the underground section is scheduled for completition in December 2022 and the entire line is expected to become operational by that time.
The total cost of the project has been revised up to EUR1.176 billion. Of which, EUR178.7 million comes as ODA provided by the French Development Agency (AFD) and EUR355.1 million as loan from the French government.
It is one of several metro lines planned for the capital city to ease traffic congestion and reduce emissions. SGT/Hanoitimes
When a finished urban railway in Hanoi is put into service remains unknown but Vietnam must pay a US$6.5 million debt for the project this year to the Chinese side, according to the local media.
Hanoi People's Committee have proposed to delay the Nam Thang Long-Tran Hung Dao Urban Railway Project until 2027 after proposing increased project investment.