Hong Kong’s MTR is scheduled to start a HK$1.6bn ($213m) project to develop Diamond Hill station in mid-April 2013.
The move is part of MTR’s strategy to transform Diamond Hill station into a major new railway hub for East Kowloon when the first phase of the SCL starts service in 2018.
SCL’s first section will run between Tai Wai and Hung Hom, while the second section from Hung Hom to Admiralty is expected to be completed in 2020.
Work to upgrade the station includes the construction of a new SCL concourse and platforms, as well as three new lifts, 12 escalators, additional ticket machines, ATMs, shops and public toilets.
MTR chief executive officer Jay Walder said: "By reorganising the station layout and exploring ways to overcome technical challenges, we have been able to maximise the number of lifts and escalators we can put into the station."
MTR’s general manager of the Shatin to Central Link Philco Wong said: "Passengers will enjoy the convenience brought by the new facilities at the Kwun Tong Line of Diamond Hill station from the end of 2015, while the facilities at the new extension will be unveiled with the completion of the SCL in 2018."
The 17km SCL project is designed to reduce pressure on Hong Kong’s current railway system and cut road traffic congestion; the network will have ten stations, with Diamond Hill serving as one of six interchange stations.
Following completion of the SCL, passengers will be able to travel directly from Diamond Hill station to the East and West New Territories, Kai Tak, Kowloon City and Hung Hom without changing trains.
The project will see journey times from Diamond Hill to Admiralty shortened from 22 minutes to 17, to Tai Wai from 17 to six and to Hung Hom from 18 to nine minutes.
Image: SCL general manager Philco Wong and MTR head of operating Francis Li showing the new designs for Diamond Hill station. Photo: courtesy of MTR Corporation.