Chinese railway rolling stock manufacturer CRRC Nanjing Puzhen has secured a S$116.7m ($85.12m) contract from Singapore Land Transport Authority (LTA) to upgrade 25 trains operating on the North East Line (NEL).

The firm will upgrade the trains’ air-conditioning, ventilation and passenger information systems, as well as assess mechanical and electrical systems to renovate or replace wherever necessary.

Additionally, it will replace the interior fittings of the NEL trains including seats, panels and flooring.

CRRC Nanjing Puzhen will also install a condition monitoring system to assess train performance and help in planning maintenance works.

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Scheduled to start from the first quarter of next year, the upgrade work will be funded by the government under the New Rail Financing Framework.

“All trains will be rehabilitated one at a time at the NEL Sengkang Depot to mitigate service disruptions.”

All trains will be rehabilitated one at a time at the NEL Sengkang Depot to mitigate service disruptions.

The overall work is expected to be completed by the third quarter of 2024.

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Operated by SBS Transit, the 19.2km long NEL started commercial operations in 2003. It comprises 16 stations and runs from HarbourFront to Punggol.

The line is scheduled to undergo extensive repair and maintenance works from early next year to maintain service reliability.

Works will include upgrading NEL power system, renovating platform screen doors and the replacement of rail crossings, signalling point machines and tracks.

LTA chief executive Ngien Hoon Ping said: “The NEL has been serving commuters since 2003. It is timely for LTA and SBST to carry out an intensified maintenance and renewal programme for the NEL trains and railway infrastructure, to ensure that commuters can continue to benefit from reliable and comfortable journeys.”