Downtown line is open!

On Friday I had errands to do downtown, I thought I’d also go along and check out the new Downtown Line, which includes a stop very close to my place of work, Asia Square (which is the Downtown station, actually). I got on at Chinatown, and noted that access to the two lines Chinatown services is very near to the street level entrance. Basically, you go down a short escalator to the ticket wickets, pay to get in, then go down another escalator and you’re at the platform. Great! To my delight, Downtown station is just as convenient!! Other stations, of course, require you to go down several escalators, walk along a long tunnel, and then finally enter the paid area.

For some reason, the day I rode, the tunnels were fully illuminated, so you could see all the cabling on the walls, etc. The front and back cars have huge windows, which means you can see all the ups and downs and turns (and shunts) in the system. Good fun for the kiddies.

The trains only have three cars, so they’re mini-things. The line’s not designed for huge capacity – I wonder what they’re going to do if demand is huge.

Naturally there are announcements every five seconds, and in four languages to boot. I would go crazy if I had to ride it every day. They have little TV screens that show public service messages – move to the centre of the car, remove your backpack when on crowded trains (that’s a new one – I like it), give your seat up for those who need it more than you do… even if they don’t want it, etc.

Saturday Naoko and Zen and I walked downtown along the old Malaysia train line, and we had the opportunity to try it again, so we did. This time the tracks weren’t illuminated, I wonder why…

Downtown line, view from front car - illuminated

Downtown line, view from front car - illuminated

Subway cars made by Bombardier!

Subway cars made by Bombardier!

Downtown line, view from front car - not illuminated

Downtown line, view from front car - not illuminated

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