During Whit weekend, the A10 South (Zuid) will remain available in both directions. The work will take place between the northernmost train track (T4) and the southernmost metro track (M1) visible on the map below. There are already foundation piles in the ground here, but these need to be reinforced with concrete and, at a later stage, fitted with abutments to support the roof sections. We will also be removing the final remnants of the now disused tram tunnel (through which line 51 used to go). Because space is so limited, the railway and metro tracks need to be partially removed in order to enable excavation and complete work on the foundations. This means that metro and train services will be reduced on Saturday, Sunday and Monday and passengers may need to change more frequently.
Work on extra station passageway during three-day Whit weekend
From Saturday, 30 May until Monday, 1 June 2020, we will be continuing construction work on the extra passenger tunnel for Amsterdam Zuid station. Over a three-day period, we will be digging up part of the railway track to work on the foundations for the second roof section of the new Brittenpassage.
The new station passageway requires a further six roof sections. Scheduling the work for these roof sections involves solving a complex puzzle. It is standard practice for construction projects to apply to ProRail at least 18 months in advance to request a train-free period. There are very good reasons for this. This time is necessary because ProRail has to manage a national railway network. For example, closure in the summer is impossible for Zuidasdok because the train track at Amsterdam Zuid needs to be available if there are closures between Amsterdam Bijlmer and Central Station, at Geldermalsen or Amersfoort. ProRail aims to coordinate or merge works in order to maximise efficiency and reduce passenger inconvenience as far as possible. A year and a half in advance, ProRail lays out the national jigsaw that then remains in place and Zuidasdok is one of the pieces of that jigsaw puzzle.
In search of long weekends
As you know, Zuidasdok has been delayed and will take longer than initially anticipated. This means that more periods of three or four days will be needed when no or fewer trains and metros are running than was originally thought. As a result, we are now in search of weekends in 2020 and 2021 to which we can add a weekday, on which there will be fewer commuters, such as holiday periods, Easter, Whit weekend or Christmas, when there are no major public events planned.
Alternative for the metro
Taking the metro out of service is also difficult and requires a long period of preparation: almost a year. On working days, there are some 48,000 metro passengers at station Zuid, and around half of that on a weekend day. Amsterdam regional transport and GVB insist that the metro can only be taken out of service if there is an effective alternative for passengers. This is far from easy when you consider that you need at least nine articulated buses to make up for just one full metro train. Many passengers wish to travel via Zuid from Amsterdam West to Oost – and in the opposite direction – and if the metro is out of service, they will need to find another way of crossing the water at de Schinkel and Kostverlorenvaart. After all, the metro is not a circular line.
Increasing passenger flow
We are therefore still working hard with construction consortium ZuidPlus, Amsterdam regional transport, GVB, ProRail and Dutch Railways (NS) to find solutions to the puzzle. All parties involved are fully aware of the need to expand Amsterdam Zuid to accommodate the increasing flow of passengers. As soon as we have the dates of an upcoming weekend when there will be fewer trains and metros, we will let you know the details.