The second phase of Ankara-Istanbul high speed line, Eskisehir-Istanbul, is opened yesterday. The first high speed train set arrived Pendik late afternoon at Pendik Station with a ceremony.
A number of ceremonies had been held in Eskisehir, Bilecik and Pendik with the participation of Prime Minister Erdogan.
First travel was as planned except a 20 min of delay due to a electrification problem.
Erdogan, in his speech at Pendik, announced that 17 cities including Kirikkale, Yozgat, Sivas, Erzincan, Erzurum, Afyon, Usak, Manisa, Izmir will be connected by 2023 where more than 40 million citizens live. He also stated that 3500 km high speed, 8500 km speed and 1000 km standard will be constructed till that time.
Istanbul Ankara high speed train will start service tomorrow, by 6 departures every day in each direction. Thus, up to 5000 passengers will be transported each day. By the completion of whole project, extension of high speed train sets and Marmaray connection, the target is to reach to 50k of ridership/day.
Travels will be free of charge for the first week.
Istanbul-Ankara high speed train line costs 8.6 billion TL (3 billion €) with 35 tunnels, 26 viaducts, 52 bridges, 158 underpasses, 83 overpasses and 669 culverts, so stated Minister of Transportation.