The second phase of Turkey's first fully automated subway system, which was opened by President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan on Sunday, will reduce traffic in Istanbul and make positive contributions to the economy.
The 16-station subway line, completed by Doğuş İnşaat, will make an annual average contribution of 800 million euros ($912 million) to the national economy.
With the addition of the nine stops to the subway line, the second stage of the Üsküdar-Çekmeköy line, the total length of lines in Istanbul has reached 170 kilometers with 169 stops.
During the 11 months since the first Üsküdar-Yamanevler line started operating in December 2017, a total of 15 million passengers have been served.
A statement issued by Doğuş İnşaat emphasized that the Üsküdar-Ümraniye-Çekmeköy subway is the biggest subway project on the Anatolian side of Istanbul.
"This project, Turkey's first automatic self-driving subway line, is the largest subway project in Turkey, the tender of which we won without a partnership. Within the scope of the project that has the first metro line with 'Peron Separator Door System' at stations, the construction of a double tunnel metro line, including 2.5-kilometer of depot area connection and 16 stations, has been actualized," the statement read.
It also added that with the introduction of the subway line, 400 buses and 858 minibuses will withdraw from traffic in the first year. In addition to personal gains such as time and fuel savings and psychological comfort due to the reduction of the travel time in public transportation and the ease of traffic in the region, the reduction of high operating costs of public transport vehicles such as buses and minibuses, road maintenance and repair costs and accident costs, the average contribution of the subway line to the economy will be about 800 million euros. The time savings will be 35 minutes on the basis of a two-way journey of a passenger, which corresponds to about nine days per year.
The subway carried out 334 services on the first day, carrying 179,612 passengers. With the introduction of the line, the Üsküdar-Çekmeköy subway is expected to carry approximately 700,000 people per day in the coming period.
As part of Turkey's 2023 Vision, which entails the accomplishment of megaprojects, the government's aim is
to put a 1,023-kilometer subway network in Istanbul, hence Istanbul will have a transportation system not attached to the city's heavy traffic.
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