The Tai Wai to Hung Hom section is an extension of the existing Ma On Shan Line from Tai Wai via East Kowloon to connect with MTR’s West Rail Line at Hung Hom. Main construction started in mid-2012, but due to the varied geology and complicated ground conditions, the tunnels were built using a combination of methods, involving four tunnel-boring machines, open excavation, mining, cut-and-cover, and blasting.

“The East-West Corridor will extend MTR’s service to the Kowloon City and Kai Tak areas,” says MTR’s CEO Mr Lincoln Leong. “It will also allow people to travel directly between east and west of the New Territories without interchanging.”

Track laying is now underway. “Our next challenge is the installation of the tunnel railway systems, and to carefully plan and implement our works that interface with existing lines, with a view to delivering the East-West Corridor for passenger service in 2019,” says Mr Philco Wong, MTR’s projects director.

The SCL project also includes the 6km Hung Hom - Admiralty section, which is an extension of the East Rail Line from Hung Hom via a new cross-harbour tunnel to Wan Chai North and Admiralty to form the North-South Corridor, which MTR expects to open in 2021.