Thessaloniki Metro approaches the finishing line of its construction phase with the trial operation for both stations and trains ready to commence shortly after, making 2019 a decisive year for the project's progress.
According to the President of Attiko Metro, Mr. Yannis Milopoulos, final quality checks of the recently manufactured trains are under completion in Italy and by the end of March the first set will be delivered to Thessaloniki (probably via the city's port).
Then, in the course of about a year, all 18 trains will be received, which will be serving the new network. As stated at ypodomes.com, the next move is for the tests to begin as soon as May, marking the first time in Thessalonikis's history that a Metro train runs on tracks.
The target is for everything to be prepared by Autumn 2019 in order for the official trial operation to be launched between the Depot, Syntrivani Station and consequently, the New Railway Station, a process that has to wait until the completion of all superstructure and electrification works that are expected to have finished until the coming Autumn.
It is reminded that one of the great innovations of Thessaloniki Metro, as Mr. Mylopoulos pointed out, is that the platforms of all stations will be equipped with extra security doors, a feature that can be found in very new Metro lines in Europe, such as in the Copenhagen Metro which is considered to be a "twin system".
The installation of safety doors on the platforms is also necessary for the initiation of the test routes in February which will first be placed at the central stations and gradually throughout the network. As the Chairman of Attiko Metro's commented, the stations are 95% ready, while construction sited are shrinking releasing roads and public spaces in 11 out of the 13 stations.
Another important development is the escalation of the construction works at Venizelos Station, that is expected to operate in 2023, where the ceiling plate being under completion in the coming period.
On Kalamaria Branch, which will operate sometime in the first half of 2021, he works are also progressing satisfactorily for all stations, lines and electromechanical equipment.
On an administration level, a new division was recently set up concerning the support and operation of new projects, which will be responsible, among others, for studies regarding the development of Thessaloniki Metro System, indicating future projects to be made in the next 10-20 years.
Speaking about the progress of Thessaloniki Metro, Mr. Yannis Mylopoulos commented at ypodomes.com that "the project is in its final phase, 2019 is the year of the trains' arrival, the installation of electromechanical equipment and the start of the trial operation, which will bring us just one step away from the official launch of Thessaloniki Metro in the end of 2020".