Underground Rail Depot at Kim Chuan
The Kim Chuan Depot houses the Operation Control Centre for the Circle Line and appears to be an unassuming two-storey structure. But beneath the modest building lies the world’s largest underground depot measuring 800 metres in length, 160 metres in width and 23 metres in height, occupying 11 hectares of land, or 17 football fields. It is an underground system that can stable up to 77 trains. By 2025 it will be expanded to become even bigger and allowing it to hold 133 trains. To optimise land use, the expanded section of the Kim Chuan depot will also have an above-ground facility to house 550 buses.
Going underground allows land at the surface for other purposes. The depot’s design allows for three hectares of the roof deck to take the loading of future industrial developments of up to nine storeys high. The four-storey depot hosts a two-level underground structure that provides stabling, maintenance, operational and support facilities for the Circle Line. The control centre itself is extremely sophisticated, as it is able to monitor the automated trains that run through all the stations. The depot also houses equipment such as overhead cranes, a train wash plant and an under-floor cleaning plant.
Another notable feature of the Kim Chuan Depot is its automatic storage and retrieval system. At 23 metres high, it is the tallest underground automated warehouse system in Singapore and it can store up to 2,000 pallets and 22,000 bins.
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