This is a brief post for those who asked for more information on the Geoncheon connection mentioned in this previous post.
As you can see in the the diagram below, this short piece of track connects the Gyeongbu high-speed railway with the new high-speed Donghae Southern Line which currently ends at Pohang. The connection opened on April 2 and is approx 7.2 km long.
Originally, any trains from Seoul heading to Pohang via high-speed rail would have had to stop and change direction at SinGyeongju Station. According to FRDB it’s the same issue that trains have at the moment going from Gyeongju on the Jungang Line to the previous Donghae Southern line. The connection, shown in red below, was built to solve this problem.
Of course this then means that trains from Seoul to Pohang won’t be able to stop at SinGyeongju station. This was also the case for previous Seoul – Pohang trains on the original line which were unable to stop at Gyeongju Station (though in this case trains could stop at West Gyeongju Station).
The original Geoncheon Station continues to operate its 4 Mugunghwa services a day, with the new “station” marked as Geoncheon on the high-speed offshoot marked as a signal station. Moryang Station on the original Jungang Line which a reader asked about hasn’t been used by passengers since the beginning of 2008 is now being used as a signal station.
I’m still curious myself as to whether the high-speed rail in fact joins the Jungang Line just after Geonchen as shown in the diagram. Other maps don’t show this but they may just not have been updated yet.
Also, here are some pictures from the newly opened Pohang Station.