Scratching your head over July 28 disruption on Hong Kong’s busy Kwun Tong MTR line? The Post is here to help you navigate

Explainer | Scratching your head over July 28 disruption on Hong Kong’s busy Kwun Tong MTR line? The Post is here to help you navigate

Many Hong Kong commuters will have to find alternative routes when services on a busy section of the MTR Corporation’s Kwun Tong railway line are suspended on July 28 to allow for work on its first infrastructure upgrade.

There will be no services between Prince Edward, Mong Kok, Yau Ma Tei and Ho Man Tin stations, busy interchanges that will have tunnel equipment replaced over a 28-hour period.

The railway operator told commuters to use alternative routes and will provide two free KMB bus services between Yau Ma Tei and Whampoa.

Here, the Post looks deeper into the suspension and what transport experts recommend to get around the problem.

1. Why is there a partial suspension of services?

The MTR Corp reviewed its railway assets in the wake of two high-profile incidents in 2022 and came up with a HK$65 billion (US$8.3 billion) plan to invest and renew them over the five years to 2028.

Some equipment has not been replaced since the company made its debut about 45 years ago.

The latest upgrade will involve 50 ageing hangers that carry power cables in a tunnel on the Kwun Tong line.

2. Where on the Kwun Tong line can commuters change trains?

Prince Edward on July 28 will become the only interchange station for Kwun Tong line commuters headed to Hong Kong Island on the Tsuen Wan line. Mong Kok station, where they normally change trains, will have no service.

The Kwun Tong line will continue to operate between Tiu Keng Leng and Prince Edward stations, as well as between Ho Man Tin and Whampoa, although passengers may experience one or two extra minutes of waiting time for trains.

On the Tsuen Wan line connecting Tsuen Wan and Central, the Prince Edward, Mong Kok and Yau Ma Tei, and Ho Man Tin stations on the Tuen Ma line will continue to operate trains because they do not share railway track with the Kwun Tong service.

“Those who mistakenly believe they remember the way and end up getting lost may feel angry and frustrated,” lawmaker Michael Tien Puk-sun said.

“It will take the corporation a lot of manpower at Prince Edward station to do a lot of explaining.”

3. How will the public find the best alternatives?

Cheris Lee Yuen-ling, the MTR Corp’s chief of operating and metro segment, said passengers should plan their journeys in advance and use the Trip Planner on the MTR mobile app to navigate their way.

She predicted that most travellers would experience delays of between two and 12 minutes on their journeys.

Prince Edward MTR station will be among four that will have suspended services for 28 hours from July 28 to allow for upgrades on the Kwun Tong line. Photo: Sam Tsang

4. What’s the best way to travel between Yau Ma Tei and Tsim Sha Tsui?

As a result of the suspended service on the Kwun Tong line’s Yau Ma Tei station, commuters from Whampoa to Tsim Sha Tsui will have to change at the Tuen Ma line’s Ho Man Tin station, get off at East Tsim Sha Tsui and walk to Tsim Sha Tsui station.

The Trip Planner said the journey was expected to take 23 minutes, nearly twice the usual time.

5. What is the quickest route from Sham Shui Po to Ho Man Tin?

People travelling from Sham Shui Po to Ho Man Tin station will not be able to change at the Kwun Tong line’s Mong Kok station.

They will have to change at Prince Edward station, get to the Kwun Tong line’s Kowloon Tong station, get off there and catch a train on the Hung Hom-bound East Rail line.

They will have to change again to the north-bound Tuen Ma line for Ho Man Tin station at Hung Hom station.

The journey will be more complicated and is expected to take 25 minutes compared with the usual 11 minutes.

6. What other public transport connects Yau Ma Tei and Whampoa?

The suspension will mean a service gap between Yau Ma Tei and Whampoa stations.

The MTR Corp has arranged for two KMB routes – 8 and 30X – to run free-of-charge services between the two stations.

“My only criticism is that it doesn’t have more bus options for passengers going to other locations that day to give them convenience,” said Quentin Cheng Hin-kei, spokesman for the Public Transport Research Team, a commuter concern group.



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