Thomson-East Coast Line MRT could link Johor Bahru to Changi Airport July 22, 2016

The news have been coming in in dribs and drabs over the past two days, but here is the essence of it: The Thomson-East Coast Line (TEL), currently under construction, could link Johor Bahru to Changi Airport.

You might not have heard this because news of the highly ambitious cross-border High Speed Rail dominated headlines on July 19, 2016, when the Memorandum of Understanding was signed between the prime ministers of Singapore and Malaysia.

However, The Straits Times then reported on July 20 about an ongoing study determining the feasibility of the TEL linking all the way into Johor Bahru:

A project to extend the Thomson- East Coast Line north into Johor Baru is gaining traction, with the second phase of an advanced engineering study under way.

[…]

The Straits Times understands that this stage of the study will include a detailed look at the feasibility, merits and cost-effectiveness of various alignments, number of stops and whether the straits crossing will be made under the sea or via a bridge.

The project was first announced in 2010 by Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong and his Malaysian counterpart Najib Razak. The Land Transport Authority (LTA) said then that the cross-border rapid transit project would be an extension of the Thomson-East Coast Line, and would be completed by 2018.

This was pushed to 2019 when Singapore decided to lengthen the Thomson-East Coast Line.

[…]

It said the study is expected to be completed by the end of the year. Construction industry watchers said the line is unlikely to be completed before 2020.

Then the news on Thursday, July 21, had Transport Minister Khaw Boon Wan announcing that the Land Transport Authority (LTA) is assessing the possibility of extending the Thomson-East Coast Line (TEL) from Sungei Bedok station to the future Changi Airport Terminal 5 and the existing Changi Airport station.

This occurred at the groundbreaking ceremony of the East Coast stretch of the TEL.

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