The travel time for trains on the under-construction line between Taipei Main Station and Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport is to be kept at 35 minutes, according to the Bureau of High Speed Rail.
The bureau had submitted an analysis report on the difference of the environmental impact of the Airport Rail to the environmental impact assessment committee due to the changes made in the system’s operational design. The committee gave its initial approval of the changes on Wednesday.
Media reported that the changes in the railway system would shorten the travel time from the Taipei Main Station to Terminal One at Taoyuan Airport to half an hour, which would meet President Ma Ying-jeou’s (馬英九) expectations of the system.
The bureau’s deputy chief engineer Rao Kuo-jeng (饒國政) said yesterday that the travel time between the two stations would remain unchanged.
“The operational speed of the railway system is to be kept at 90kph, and it will only be elevated to 100kph whenever there is a delay,” he said.
According to the bureau, the operational speed of the Airport Rail was set at 80kph when the committee reviewed the environmental impact report in 2004. In 2006, the operational speed was changed to 90kph when the bureau signed a contract with the contractor, with the maximum speed on the rail system being 110kph.
Because of the elevation in speed, the bureau had proposed to build more acoustic partitions along the route to allay concerns over noise pollution, Rao said.
Rao said that 95 percent of the civil engineering work for the Airport Rail system has been completed.
The rail system is scheduled to be operational by the end of next year, he said.