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February 14, 2011

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Home » Metro » Public Services

Railway shelter opens for late-night arrivals

AN underground garage at Shanghai Railway Station has been opened to provide shelter for rail passengers arriving late at night when the Metro is closed.

This initiative by city traffic authorities follows complaints that thousands of late-night passengers have to hang around for hours until the subway starts running.

The garage, at the south square of the railway station and close to Metro Line 1, is open to passengers from 1am to 5am, officials said.

People using the facility will be guided to the subway shortly before Line 1 opens at 5am, the city Metro operator said.

Many people are currently returning to the city after the Spring Festival holiday.

Ding Guiru, a 49-year-old Anhui Province native, told a local evening newspaper that "she could not afford the taxi fares" and the only way she knew to go to suburban Songjiang District is by the subway.

At times, more than 5,000 passengers are waiting outside the station, playing cards or dozing on their luggage or a companion's shoulder.

Workers unfamiliar with city traffic and unwilling or unable to afford cabs or motels, endure the cold and catch the subway the next day.

For others, Shanghai is a transit stop. Hao Panlin, a Sichuan native, said he would crouch in an underground passage at Shanghai South Railway Station, another downtown transport hub, overnight before catching an early bus to neighboring Jiangsu Province.

Officials at Shanghai South Railway Station said they would arrange for passengers to stay on parked trains.

Metro officials said they would add early services to handle huge passenger numbers.

At peak times, more than 7,300 passengers enter the Line 1 station between 5am to 7am.

The city Metro network, with 11 lines, handled 22.5 million passengers during the seven-day holiday.

Meanwhile, traffic authorities suggest late-night passengers could also catch night buses.


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