The much-anticipated Airport Rail from Taipei to Taoyuan is scheduled to begin trial operation next year, the Bureau of High Speed Rail said yesterday.
Last year, the Ministry of Transportation and Communications finalized the launch date for the Airport Rail as the end of next year after several postponements.
The bureau’s acting director general Allen Hu (胡湘麟) said yesterday that 91.77 percent of the construction has been completed.
Testing began last month in one of the route’s six sections, with the final section from Sanchung (三重) to Taipei to be tested in October, Hu said.
“Testing is to be completed by the beginning of next year, when we will give the system to the Taoyuan Metro Corp for a one-year-long trial operation. The entire route is scheduled to be launched by the end of next year,” he said.
“Based on our Taipei MRT system experience, one year is needed to address any problems before official operations begin,” Hu added.
The express train from Taipei to Taoyuan is expected to take 35 minutes, with the regular service taking about 50 minutes.
Previously, the bureau had recommended that express train tickets cost NT$160 and regular service tickets cost NT$80.
However, the final ticketing scheme will be decided by the Taoyuan Metro Corp, when it takes over operations.
Hu said the bureau had agreed to compensate the Taoyuan Metro Corp as a result of construction delays, adding that the bureau is to seek compensation from the construction contractor.
The bureau has purchased 28 new train sets, comprising 11 for express services and 18 for regular services.