Homebuyers, investors, and commuters who purchased condos for sale near the downtown line have one more thing to smile about with the opening of the second phase in December 2015. Bukit Panjang and other communities in the northwest now have quicker access to Marina Bay and the Central Business District.
Hills TwoOne and The Skywoods are two of the New Launch Condo developments that will directly benefit from the new 12-station, 16.6 km DTL2 development, which runs through areas like Beauty World, Hillview, Little India, King Albert Park, and Rochor. It then connects to the six-station DTL1, which was launched in 2013.
The operators of the line, SBS Transit, estimate that travel time for commuters will be cut by up to 40 percent. They gave the example of a trip from Bukit Panjang to Bugis, which currently takes half an hour, as compared to 50 minutes before the line was installed. This is a great selling point for homeowners with condos for sale.
In addition to the proximity to certain New Launch Condo developments, homeowners are also benefitting from four new interchange stations at Botanic Gardens, Bukit Panjang, Newton and Little India. These stations have improved connectivity to other rail lines such as the Circle Line, Bukit Panjang LRT, North-South, and North-East Lines.
Another selling point for those with condos for sale in the area is the reduction of bus and train fares by 1.9 per cent. In fact, commuters were able to ride free for a period of time as they familiarised themselves with the new train line. The fares were reduced on December 27; the same day the new line began operations.
Only six trains served the first phase of the network: this number has now been increased to 45. In the first quarter of 2015, daily ridership stood at 67,000. The developers plan to increase this figure to 500,000 when the third and final phase of the line is completed in 2017. Transport Minister Lui Tuck Yew noted that with the opening of DTL2, the rail network would have grown by a third over the last four years.
Compared to 117 train stations at the end of 2010, the network now has a total of 157 stations, which means that 6 in 10 families now live within a ten-minute walk to a station. New Launch Condo owners and other commuters can also expect increased capacity on the MRT network, which now has new train cars, and a recently upgraded train signalling system.
Minister Lui said that the number of train trips has increased by over 25 per cent in the last four years, with waiting time being reduced by up to 30 per cent as 40 new trains serve the network. He noted that crowding has eased (a third selling point for those with condos for sale), and the number of commuters who are unable to board either the first or second trains has been considerably reduced to 5 per cent in 2015, down from 10 per cent in 2013.