Ricardo is proud to have played its part in the preparations for South Korea’s recent Winter Olympics, helping to ensure the new Gangneung KTX high-speed line opened on schedule ahead of the Games.
The new route provides a coast-to-coast link across the north of the country, from Incheon airport on the west coast to the north-east port city of Gangneung, passing through both Seoul and the Olympic venues in Pyeongchang.
Whilst existing lines are used for the 116km western section from Incheon to the city of Wonju, construction of the new 120km eastern section, from Wonju via Pyeongchang to Gangneung, commenced in 2012.
Ricardo performed the independent safety assessments of the Automatic Train Protection (ATP) system on the 60km Pyeongchang-Gangneung section of the new build, ensuring the signalling technology was fully compliant with required technical standards.
Through on-site audits and in-depth document reviews, the Seoul-based team verified the quality management systems for the design, manufacture, installation, testing and commission of the ATP system, verifying the requirements of international technical standards had been met.
Legacy of the Games
Construction of the line was a central component of South Korea’s infrastructure commitments included in its bid to host the 2018 Games. The route introduces direct rail services from Seoul to Pyeongchang for the first time - with high-speed services taking around one hour - offering an alternative to road connections that can take up to three hours. The route was completed on schedule in December 2017.
Following the completion of the Paralympic Games in March 2018, the line will continue to provide a mix of high speed and conventional services between the capital and the north eastern region.
Concurrent with the construction of the Gangneung Line, the team also provided similar safety assessment services for the installation of the ATP system on the Sinwon-Seowonju section of the Jungang Line upgrade – another project initiated in anticipation of the Games to improve both speed and capacity on this key cross-country route from Seoul to the country's south west.