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In full: LTA and SMRT's statement on service disruptions to 19 stations on NSEWL

From Dec 8 to Dec 31, the operating hours for 19 stations on the East West Line and North South Line will be shortened on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays, according to the Land Transport Authority and rail operator SMRT. The service disruption will include a full shut down of the affected stretches on two Sundays - Dec 10 and Dec 17. This unprecedented move is aimed at giving the engineering crew more time to complete resignalling and maintenance work. Here is LTA and SMRT's full statement on the upcoming changes:

In full: LTA and SMRT's statement on service disruptions to 19 stations on NSEWL

TODAY file photo

From Dec 8 to Dec 31, the operating hours for 19 stations on the East West Line and North South Line will be shortened on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays, according to the Land Transport Authority and rail operator SMRT. The service disruption will include a full shut down of the affected stretches on two Sundays - Dec 10 and Dec 17. This unprecedented move is aimed at giving the engineering crew more time to complete resignalling and maintenance work. Here is LTA and SMRT's full statement on the upcoming changes:

Early closure and late opening on NSEWL

LTA, SMRT and (signalling equipment provider) Thales have worked closely together on a revised engineering schedule for the North-South and East-West Lines (NSEWL). This enables us to accelerate the re-signalling works on the EWL so that train services on the entire line, including TWE, can run seamlessly on the new CBTC system, and also provides more time for other renewal projects and maintenance works to improve overall reliability on the NSEWL.

With extended engineering hours from December 2017 onwards, the completion of re-signalling works on the EWL will be significantly accelerated from end-2018 to June 2018.

From Friday, 8 December to Sunday, 31 December, 17 EWL MRT stations (from Tiong Bahru to Tuas Link stations) and two NSL MRT stations (Bukit Batok and Bukit Gombak stations) will close earlier on Fridays and Saturdays, and open later on Saturdays and Sundays. This arrangement will more than double LTA and SMRT's engineering and track access time from 3 hours to 7.5 hours each night.

There will also be full Sunday closure on these stretches on 10 December and 17 December (see dates below). The NSL MRT stations at Bukit Batok and Bukit Gombak are also affected as the works will extend to Jurong East MRT station, which is a heavily used intersection of the NSL and EWL.

Reduced train service hours will also be implemented along other stretches of the NSEWL in the first half of 2018, to facilitate re-signalling and other renewal and maintenance works. LTA and SMRT will work together to minimise inconvenience to commuters and ensure that commuters are informed of reduced train service hours in a timely manner.

Parallel shuttle buses will be provided along affected MRT stations during affected hours. As per past planned closures, fares for these shuttle bus services will follow the rail fare structure. Commuters can also continue their travel on alternative rail lines such as the Circle Line and Downtown Line.

Said LTA's Chief Executive, Mr Ngien Hoon Ping: "The additional engineering hours is very precious to LTA, SMRT and Thales. This will substantially accelerate the implementation of the new signalling system for the EWL and provide additional maintenance hours for the entire NSEWL network.

"More engineering hours will also be needed in the first half of 2018 as we work towards the completion of the re-signalling works on the NSEWL.

"We will announce more details at a later date and work with public transport operators to ensure that there are alternative options for commuters who need to travel along affected stretches. When re-signalling is complete, commuters will be able to look forward to shorter headways and increased capacity on the NSEWL. We seek the patience and understanding of commuters."

During this period, station staff will be deployed to assist and guide commuters. More details on the first and last train timings at affected stations will be provided by SMRT over the next few days.

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