Joint News Release by the Land Transport Authority (LTA) & SBS Transit - Train Services on Downtown Line to Start Later at 7.30am on Sundays to Facilitate Systems Integration Testing

News Releases 26 Apr 2017 Downtown Line 3 (DTL3)

​Train services on the Downtown Line (DTL) from Bukit Panjang to Chinatown stations will commence later at 7.30am on Sundays from 14 May 2017 to 27 Aug 2017, excluding the Hari Raya Puasa weekend on 25 Jun 2017. This is to facilitate the testing of the entire DTL as an integrated line in preparation for the opening of DTL3 by end-2017.


  1. In addition to the usual three engineering hours per night to run tests, two more hours are required for these test runs as one full round-trip loop between Bukit Panjang and Expo stations will take about 2.5 hours. Beyond running test trains, additional time is also needed for preparatory works prior to commencement of each test, and readying the systems for passenger service. Unlike the Circle Line (CCL), which was a shorter rail line and had fewer trains, the DTL is more complex and the late opening hours is necessary for more rigorous testing and system integration.

  1. Mr Ngien Hoon Ping, Chief Executive of the Land Transport Authority (LTA), said:  “We are making good progress on the DTL3 and are on track to open the 16 new stations by the end of the year. Before this, we need to carry out comprehensive systems testing and run trains along the entire DTL from Bukit Panjang to Expo. It is therefore necessary that we extend our limited engineering hours once a week to allow our engineers to test the system in an integrated manner.”

  1. Mr Gan Juay Kiat, Chief Executive Officer of SBS Transit (SBST), said: "When fully open later this year, DTL3 will connect commuters from Singapore Expo in the East to Bukit Panjang in the West. It will significantly enhance accessibility and connectivity for commuters and we want to do all that is possible to ensure the Line’s smooth running. To this end, we need to conduct test runs and early Sunday mornings are the best times to do these. We apologise for the inconvenience this may bring and have made alternative bus arrangements so that commuters can still get around on early Sunday mornings when train services start later."

Alternative Travel Arrangements


  1. Affected commuters can use existing public bus services, such as 66, 67, 75, 170/170A, 171, 190, 700A, 960, 961, 970 and 972 to travel between the Downtown Line corridor and the City area. They can also use these bus services to transfer to the other rail lines to continue their travel on the rail network.

  1. A shuttle bus service that runs parallel to the DTL1 and DTL2 alignment and stops at each of the 18 DTL1 and DTL2 stations will also be provided. Fares for this shuttle bus service will follow the DTL fare structure. The shuttle bus service will run at the following headways:

Shuttle Bus Direction

Headway before 6.30am

Headway from 6.30 to 7.30am

Bukit Panjang to Chinatown

11-15 min

6 min

Chinatown to Bukit Panjang

11-15 min

8-9 min

  1. Commuters are advised to check for travel updates before starting their trip. Information will be available on the LTA and SBST Facebook and Twitter accounts, LTA Traffic News, MyTransport.SG and iris mobile app.  

Annex A: Sunday first train departure time

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