Project Overview

Upon its extension across the harbour, the 46-km East Rail Line (EAL) consists of 16 stations including the new terminus Admiralty Station which becomes the only mega interchange station in the MTR network with four-line interchanging (Existing Tsuen Wan Line, Island Line, South Island Line and East Rail Line). EAL passengers arriving at this station can change to other lines easily without exiting the paid area; travelling time will be significantly reduced.

With the new train fleet and new signaling system, the journey between Sheung Shui and Admiralty stations with direct access will take only about 40 minutes. Passengers can save about 15 minutes for the same journey than now which requires interchanges. This does not only provide passengers with faster train journeys but also enhances the efficiency of the train service arrangement.

Project Commissioner

The Government of Hong Kong SAR, MTR Corporation Limited

Project Creator

Arup Hong Kong Limited

Project Brief

The EAL has been serving Hong Kong for over a century. The EAL Cross-Harbour Extension marks a major historic milestone for the EAL as it extends across Victoria Harbour to the core business district in Hong Kong, connecting the New Territories, Kowloon and Hong Kong Island as well as increasing the coverage and connectivity of the railway network with more travelling options for the public.

The Admiralty Station Extension connects four existing railway lines underground, it massively expands under the operating Admiralty Station and railway lines, which is extremely complex and challenging.

Project Innovation/Need

With the new underground Admiralty Station Extension being the terminus of the EAL and an interchange hub, transporting passengers smoothly from platform to platform is crucial. 34 new escalators are provided in the new extension connecting multi-level platforms and concourse. A unique and spacious atrium, over 30m tall, becomes a signature feature of the station which provides a space for vertical transportation. To draw natural light into the atrium and provide passengers with a comfortable travelling experience, a stunning skylight is designed next to the new exit at street level. This new exit connects to the footbridge network which brings passengers to nearby buildings like the Central Government Office.

Art in MTR
Make use of the spacious new atrium space, a colorful suspended artwork “Mapping Our Way”, designed by American artist Talley Fisher, represents the four railway lines converging at the station to enrich the travel experience for the passenger.

Real Time Information
The Admiralty Station Extension integrates Real Time Information: “Train Car Loading Indicator” on EAL platforms and “Cross-Harbour Easy” showing real time platform conditions to facilitate passengers’ choices of time-saving and comfortable routes.

Design Challenge

Design challenges at an operating station
The construction works of the massive underground expansion of Admiralty Station Extension beneath the operating station and railway lines involved controlled blasting, excavation and construction of support structures underneath existing railway tunnels located beneath the heart of one of Hong Kong’s busiest commercial and financial centres. Precise planning and construction work was essential for successful completion. In addition, the works also included maintaining nearby major roads and building structures, and managing groundborne vibrations arising from construction. The project team planned the works thoroughly and in detail for the construction of the Admiralty Station Expansion which was incredibly challenging. The project was successfully completed with normal railway operations maintained every day. Trains continued to use Admiralty Station throughout the project with passengers boarding and alighting on their journeys without noticing the massive scale of the works taking place underground.


A Greener Harcourt Garden
Above the new station atrium, the former Harcourt Garden is being redesigned to an elevated landscape deck. The garden features 29 granite blocks of a historic seawall discovered during the station excavation work; together with the additional extensive greenery, terraced areas are in placed for public enjoyment.

This award celebrates the design process and product of planning, designing and constructing form, space and ambience that reflect functional, technical, social, and aesthetic considerations. Consideration given for material selection, technology, light and shadow. 
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