South Korean capital city Seoul has launched the first section of its Subway Line 9 following two months of delays caused by its automated fare system.
The 25.5km section connects Gimpo Airport to Shin Nonhyeon, covering 25 stations.
The section will carry express trains on three tracks allowing passengers to reach Gimpo from Gangnam in less than 30 minutes, stopping at nine stations.
The line will run four-car Hyundai-Rotem trains with speeds of 33km/h for local stopping trains and 47km/h for express trains.
The section has been built by ‘Seoul Metro Line 9’ (SML9) – a Hyundai-Rotem-led consortium under a 2005 contract to build and run the line for 30 years.
The line will be operated by Southlink 9 Company Limited (80% held by Veolia Transport and 20% by Rotem) for ten years under a subsequent contract signed in 2007.
The second section of the Seoul Line 9 will be complete by 2013 and connect Shin Nonhyeon to Jamsil’s Sports Complex Station.
The last/third section will be complete by 2015 and connect the Sports Complex Station to Bangi-dong.