Railway halt raises reactions

Railway halt raises reactions

ISTANBUL - Hürriyet Daily News
Starting Jan. 1, 2012, a high-speed rail construction project will affect millions of passengers who ride the Istanbul-İzmit railway for the next two years.

The high-speed rail construction project between Ankara and Istanbul will close the 44-km part of the railway, which is between İzmit, the western province of Kocaeli’s capital, and Istanbul, a written statement issued yesterday by Turkish State Railways (TCDD) read.

İzmit is approximately 90 km outside Istanbul. The new project will cancel the railway connection from Istanbul to İzmit for two years. “About 80,000 Kocaeli University students use this railway from their homes in Istanbul every day. There will be serious chaos when we face the new transportation alternatives,” said Onur Emre, a student from Kocaeli University.

Approximately 5 million passengers use the railway each year, according to TCDD statistics. “Municipalities of Istanbul and İzmit are coordinating with the TCDD in order to prevent passengers from struggling to find transportation,” said Aycı. However, municipalities have yet to announce alternative means of transportation.

“Train riders must find the most appropriate way for themselves during the construction term,” Kocaeli Gov. Ercan Topaca said yesterday in a written statement. Topaca did not provide suggestions for transportation alternatives.