Six stations of the west metro’s first phase, i.e. the Ruoholahti–Matinkylä section, were handed over to HKL today to start preparations for the initiation of metro traffic. The aim is to hand over the Helsinki stations next week. The management of the stations and rail line will be handed over from Länsimetro to HKL later in September.
The Länsi-Uusimaa Department for Rescue Services has given Länsimetro Oy permission to hand over the six stations and rail line in Espoo to HKL for preparations to initiate metro traffic. The handover for the two stations in Helsinki is planned to take place next week.
“The handover process for the west metro is now underway and progressing. HKL can now begin its own preparations for commencing traffic,” says Olli Isotalo, Chairman of the Board of Länsimetro Oy.
HKL can now begin some of its own service and maintenance operations. Not all the control systems are in operational use yet. In Länsimetro’s estimate, these systems can be gradually transferred to operational use starting from next week.
“HKL will do its best to proceed with the tasks related to the initiation of metro traffic that are possible at this stage,” says Ville Lehmuskoski, Managing Director of HKL.
In HKL’s initial estimate, it will take about four weeks for it to start operational use after the management handover planned for late September.
“Our goal to reduce this preparation period now that we can use the stations. In the current situation, however, HKL cannot commence operations of all the systems, so it is impossible to state the final timetable required for the work. The most crucial factor for the operational use of the west metro infrastructure is when the control systems that function as the metro’s “central nervous system” can be handed over to HKL fully operational,” adds Lehmuskoski.
HKL will need time to start up the various building services and control systems and ensure their undisturbed functioning before starting traffic. Test drives and training metro drivers has been ongoing on the west metro section for a long time now.
“The drivers must familiarise themselves with several systems that are not present in the existing metro, as well as systems that are operationally different from those that were built for the current metro almost 40 years ago. These include the ventilation system of the west metro stations that the existing metro lacks,” remarks Ville Lehmuskoski.
The schedule for HKL to allow metro traffic to commence on the west metro section will be confirmed later. HSL will decide on the starting date of metro traffic when HKL has confirmed how long it will need for its preparatory work.
Olli Isotalo, Chairman of the Board, Länsimetro Oy, tel. +358 50 593 359
Ville Lehmuskoski, Managing Director, HKL, tel. +358 40 520 6710.