The West Metro is moving to the regulatory inspection phase. Sufficient time must be allowed for rectifying any defects discovered during the inspections.
“The West Metro is ready to operate as soon as final approval has been given. In my estimation, Metro services could start in September 2017, says Ville Saksi, CEO of Länsimetro Oy, the company responsible for the construction work.
HKL, who is responsible for the operation of the Metro services, has been performing trial runs on the new Metro line during the winter and spring. The trial runs have gone well and will be completed on 14 May 2017.
“The trial runs have been successful and have allowed us to ensure that the Metro will be operational in various exceptional situations. When the line is opened to passengers, it will be reliable and safe,” says Ville Lehmuskoski, Managing Director of HKL.
After the regulatory inspections have been completed, Länsimetro Oy, HKL and HSL will decide the final start date of Metro and feeder services. Feeder bus services will not start running at the beginning of the autumn timetable season on 14 August 2017. Instead, the South Espoo and Lauttasaari buses will continue to run on the current routes.
“Our aim is to ensure passengers’ journeys in South Espoo and Lauttasaari in all situations,” says Suvi Rihtniemi, Executive Director of HSL. “In addition, bus operators need at least two months to plan the operation of services and employees’ shifts.”
The Metro and current bus routes will operate simultaneously for some time before switching to feeder bus services. This allows us to gain valuable experience about Metro services on the new section of line.