Sunday, at 07:07 o’clock to be precise, the new Amstelveen line is officially put into use. Since Wednesday 9 December, people have already been able to join the test runs. The timetable is run as much as possible, but there may still be some teething problems.
The line is ready, albeit not completely yet: the tram should have started and ended its run at the Arnold Schönberglaan, on the south side of the Amsterdam Zuid station. However, for the time being this stop is still missing. This is closely related to the refurbishment of the station, the associated public transport, and the required tunnelling of the A10 south motorway. The station needs more space to absorb the passenger flows in the immediate future: from approximately 80,000 daily passengers today (before the coronavirus crisis) to more than three times as many in about ten years’ time. To create this space, the A10 south motorway needs to be tunnelled at the level of the station. Before we start working on these tunnels, we are first building a large part of the new station. Like the extra passenger tunnel (the Brittenpassage) and the refurbishment of the present main entrance (the Minervapassage). The start of the tunnelling will therefore still take some time. Only when the southern tunnel is ready can we realise the start and end stop of tram line 25. Passengers will then get on and off right in front of the entrance of the station.
However, that will not be the case in the coming years just yet. As a result, line 25 temporarily starts and ends its run at the Strawinskylaan. A location where much public transport presently comes together. The Amsterdam Transport Region and the Zuidasdok programme organisation are examining whether an alternative is available. This will not be an easy task. A temporary start and end stop on the northern side of the A10 motorway are considered, alongside the station. The difficult thing about this is that we need to realise the northern tunnel at exactly this location. If we realise a tram stop there then we can, consequently, only start working on the northern tunnel when the southern tunnel has been completed and the tram can be moved to its definitive location. In the plans of Zuidasdok, we are not building the northern and the southern tunnel completely after each other, but partly at the same time. If we need to perform this work in succession, then this results in a considerable delay. Hence, it may make more sense to, for the time being, keep the new Amstelveen line at the Strawinskylaan. The Transport Region and Zuidasdok hope to draw conclusions in the spring of 2021.
Do you want to follow the official opening online? Then follow the livestream on 13 December from 16:30 o’clock.