11 November 2005 – Next stop, Buangkok station.
The station along the North East Line (NEL) will open its doors for revenue service in January 2006.
The opening, which comes two-and-a-half years after the official launch of NEL, had been delayed because of the lack of housing development in the vicinity. The Land Transport Authority had earlier projected that there should be a minimum of about 2,000 dwelling units completed within a 400m radius to sustain the opening of Buangkok station.
And while that figure has yet to be reached, a steady rise in NEL ridership coupled with significant cost control efforts, have made it possible for SBS Transit to open the station for public service.
Mr Ong Boon Leong, Executive Director, SBS Transit said, “For the past 2½ years, we have been closely monitoring the developments around Buangkok station. At the same time, we have not been sitting idle and have been looking at ways to keep costs low so as to enable us to open the station earlier. I am glad to say we have been successful in this,” he said.
Since the commencement of service, losses at SBS Transit’s rail operations have narrowed considerably. Ridership on NEL has also been growing steadily and for the first time saw an average daily ridership for the month surpassing the 200,000-mark in October.
These factors, coupled with the fact that over 400 dwelling units under the first phase of the Coris project are expected to be completed in the first quarter of 2006, have made it possible for SBS Transit to open Buangkok station.
The exact date of the opening will be announced at a later date after equipment checks and changes to the system maps are completed.
The station will be opened daily from 0530hrs to 0035hrs with the first train leaving the station at 0546hrs and last train arriving at 0022hrs. The train service frequency is targetted at 4 mins during peak hours and 6.5 mins during non-peak hours. The fare will be pegged to distance, following the existing fare structure with the rest of the stations in NEL.
Bus Services 27 and 43 will continue to serve Buangkok station.