Metro line No. 1 of Ho Chi Minh City will undergo a test run on the entire route for the first time on August 31, according to the Ho Chi Minh City Urban Railway Management Board (MAUR).
MAUR and Japan’s Hitachi Group, a contractor of the project, will hold the trial run for the 19.7-kilometer-long metro line, stretching from Ben Thanh Market in District 1 to Suoi Tien Theme Park in Thu Duc City.
To ensure safety, the number of passengers on board the test run will be limited to 20, according to Hitachi.
The contractor will also arrange staff and prepare solutions for urgent cases in underground stations.
The first metro line in the southern metropolis has successfully embarked on three test runs, with the first one on December 21 last year at under 40 kilometers per hour.
Its second trial run was held on January 18 and the third one on April 26 this year on a 12.3-kilometer section of the elevated track at below 50 kilometers per hour.
The Ho Chi Minh City Department of Transport has planned a fare of VND12,000-18,000 (US$0.5-0.8) per single trip for the metro line.
In particular, tickets will cost VND12,000 ($0.5) for passengers traveling less than five kilometers, and VND18,000 ($0.8) for over 15 kilometers.
Long-term fare cards will also be available at VND40,000 ($1.7) per day, VND90,000 ($3.8) per three days, and VND260,000 ($10.9) per month.
MAUR had planned to complete the construction of the project by the end of this year and put it into commercial operation next year.
The project is now nearly 96 percent complete. However, the public investment allocated to it totaled some VND4.7 trillion ($196.6 million) this year, while only VND858.75 billion ($35.9 million), or 18.4 percent, has been disbursed.
The contractor’s warranty period will last from 2024 to 2025 and the contractor will continue its operation and maintenance support from 2024 to 2028.
To ensure the progress of the project, MAUR will accelerate the installation of electro-mechanical equipment, selection of consultants to assess the safety of the entire route, and the operation of each section and the whole line on a trial basis this year.
The underground Ben Thanh metro station, considered the central station for Ho Chi Minh City’s first metro line project, is 99 percent complete, Ngo Quoc Kiet, architecture manager of the station, told Tuoi Tre (Youth) newspaper.
Nearly all of its fundamental elements have been finalized. The final touches are being applied to resolve minor issues, like scratches.
The station will be linked to other metro lines in the future, such as metro lines No. 2, 3a, and 4, Kiet added.
Metro line No. 1, including 2.6 kilometers of underground railways and 17.1 kilometers of elevated tracks, carries a price tag of VND43.7 trillion ($1.8 billion).
The line has 17 trains, each consisting of three cars and designed to run at up to 110 kilometers per hour above the ground and 80 kilometers per hour underground.
Each Japanese-manufactured train is 61.5 meters long and can carry 930 passengers, including 147 seating and 783 standing guests.