Shinbundang Line Extension to Open January 30

The southern Shinbundang Line Extension to Suwon is set to open at the end of this month. The high-speed metro line has been open for over four years now and from January 30, the Shinbundang Line will begin operating services all the way to Gwanggyo(Kyonggi Univ.) Station in Suwon.

There are six new stations on the 12.8km extension: Dongcheon, Suji-gu Office, Seongbok, Sanghyeon, Gwanggyo Jungang(Ajou Univ.) and Gwanggyo(Kyonggi Univ.).

Shinbundang Extension Map

Also known as the “DX Line”, the current service boasts a quick trip of only 16 minutes from Gangnam to Jeonja Station and travels at a top speed of 110 km/h. The opening of the extension will bring the length of the entire line to 31.3km, making it the longest driverless railway in Korea. Travelling the length of the line is expected to take 30 minutes, which is very fast considering that a trip on the Bundang line from Seonneung to Cheongmyeong (the first station on the Bundang Line in Suwon) takes 58 minutes.

Trains will operate from 5:30am to 1am on weekdays and 5:30am to 12am on weekends and public holidays. Designs of the six new stations can be viewed on the Gyeonggi Rail website. Gwanggyo, the final station, is the only station above ground and also the location of the new depot. Another unique station is Gwanggyo Jungang Station which has an underground bus stop for quick transfers — likely to be popular on cold winter days.

Gwanggyo Station Bus Station

Gwanggyo Jungang Station under construction in January 2016. Buses will travel down the centre of the road into the first floor of the station.

 

Fares and Extra Fees

The stations on the new extension (Dongcheon – Gwanggyo) and the current Shinbundang Line (Gangnam – Jeongja) are operated by different companies, DX Line and Gyeonggi Rail, each with their own extra fee of 900 won.

DX Line

This is also on top of the standard fare of 1,250 won plus an extra 100 won/5km when travelling over a distance of 10km. However, if you’re travelling across both sections, commuters will receive a 600 won discount. According to Internet Rail News, travelling from Gangnam to Gwanggyo will cost you around 2950 won.

Despite the discount, the two extra fees do make travelling shorter distances between the two sections feel a bit pricey, especially for the many commuters likely to be travelling to Pangyo and back. To counter this, Gyeonggi Rail is implementing a “cash back” initiative for those travelling between Dongcheon/Suji City Hall and Pangyo. It will be interesting to see whether other locations are included in this initiative later.

 

Migeum Station & Second Stage of Shinbundang Line Extension

Another station on the new extension, Migeum, is under construction and is expected to open in October 2017. This will mean that the Shinbundang Line will have another transfer point to the Bundang Line, the other one being at Jeongja Station. This may come as a surprise to some, as Migeum Station is directly after Jeongja Station approximately only 1.8km away.

Migeum Shinbundang Line Station under construction in October 2015.

Migeum Station under construction in October 2015. Image: Seongnam City

The addition of Migeum didn’t come without controversy and was opposed by Suwon. While it may be merely be “one more stop”, one of the main reasons the Shinbundang Line is so attractive to commuters is the speed and fewer number of stations. According to Vision Seongnam, the station was at 56% completion in November last year. Once open, it will become part of the Gyeonggi Rail section of the line.

Dongcheon – Gwanggyo is only the first stage of the southern extension, the second stage being from Gwanggyo Station to Homaesil which is scheduled to open in 2020. We’ll have more on this extension closer to the time. Check out the map (very large file) on the Gyeonggi Rail website for more information.

 

When is the northern extension across the river opening!?

Still a long way off yet sorry. Due to certain maps and phone apps prematurely displaying the planned northern extension of the Shinbundang Line, it seems many people have been under the impression that it would be just around the corner.

Shinbundang Northern Extension on Map

Even though plans haven’t been completed, this extension route is shown on many apps and maps

Sadly, the stations and actual route haven’t even been decided for certain yet. With two competing proposals already on the table, Seoul is also investigating if the northern part of the line can be shared with the GTX A Line.

It’s easy to see why people are excited over this extension, linking one the busiest stations (Gangnam) on the network with Lines 7, 9, 3 and major stations on the northern side of central Seoul. Nevertheless, until a decision is made we’ll have to wait. We’ll take a look at the different proposals in another post later this year.

Feature Image: Sburst – Wikicommons

About This Author

<p>Originally from New Zealand, Andy moved to Korea in 2007 and very quickly became interested in the many different public transport and urban development projects around Korea. He currently lives in Sejong city and is particularly interested in rail projects, transport hubs and technology.</p>

10 Comments

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  • Hey Andy,

    Thanks for the update on the Shinbundang southern extension. Shame the price of it so I hope the price reduction scheme works.

    That’s subway app works really well except false hopes on that northern extension. From the posts (and maps) on Frdb.wo.to and the tunnel they dug under the Han in 2009 (http://koreajoongangdaily.joins.com/news/article/article.aspx?aid=2908481) and the construction I saw on the north side of Icheon Station years ago (but maybe just heavy remodeling? It was enough to close a couple exits near the army base) I figured they clearly had a plan.

    Now I’ve gone back to FRDB’s site and see the north extension is labeled ‘설계’ (design) and both construction and opening date on the Korean Wikipedia are 미정 (undefined).

    Thanks for putting it in perspective (and in English!) and I look forward to reading your next installment.

    Richard 2 years ago Reply


    • Hey Richard – thanks for the comment. I always thought it was quite funny how the supposed northern extension was included on so many maps despite not being decided, yet the the southern extension under construction isn’t anywhere to be seen!

      The tunnel photo that you linked appears to be from during construction of the northern 분당선 extension tunnel under the 한강 (http://dkbnews.donga.com/3/all/20090806/34219423/1). Seems to be an error on the Joonang Daily’s part. You almost got my hopes up though, as this is one extension I’d really like to see open as soon as possible.

      Andy Tebay 2 years ago Reply


  • Just to clarify on the station names…

    in a couple of instances you’ve used, “Gyanggyo” and “Gywanggyo,” both of which I think are typos, yes?

    I’m not trying to be critical here, I just want to make sure that your excellent site continues to be a source of clear and accurate information.

    Walter Foreman 2 years ago Reply


    • Thanks for spotting those! Will fix the image soon. Teaches me for typing too late :)

      Andy Tebay 2 years ago Reply


  • The higher price of Sinbundang has always been a sticking point, and this just makes it worse. It’s the confusion and lack of cohesion that’s really a bother.

    Like Richard above, I too was under the impression that the tunnel under the Han was complete. Now I wonder if the information that it’s going under is even correct. But I imagine it would?

    Sinsa is going to be a huge station in the next five or ten years once this and the new line go through. Exciting! … Not that the southern extension isn’t cool too. :P

    Philip Partington 2 years ago Reply


  • That news article seemed solid and that is what I was resting my hopes on. Now it’s been removed from the English wiki and the estimated opening has been removed as well. Now we just need to pester the smartphone app individual to remove this false hope.

    “The higher price of Sinbundang has always been a sticking point, and this just makes it worse. It’s the confusion and lack of cohesion that’s really a bother.”
    -Seoul was able to get all bus services and all subway lines to agree to a standard fare and free transfers and a uniform payment method; a significant feat. One would think two companies owning one subway line could make trips on that one line seamless and remove any form of sticker shock from the price. Which now begs the question, will it be a 3rd company who will cross the Han? ^^

    I’ve lamented to friends multiple times how I wish Phase I was just a few kilometers longer as even stopping before the Han would open multiple connections. And once it stretches north of the river their ride share can only improve. I’ll need to wait longer than I wanted but I’ll still look forward to it.

    Thanks again for all the news Andy :)

    Richard 2 years ago Reply


    • I completely agree about Phase 1! I’d even just love to see them start working on going through to at least 논현역.

      Andy Tebay 2 years ago Reply


  • Thanks for the interesting info. I can’t wait until this line gets extended near to a point where going to 성균관대 would be easier. Seems like that won’t be at least until 2020. But it’s a good start to making 아주대학교 more accessible to people who may prefer to live in Seoul or whom have family in Seoul. And hopefully more lines as fast as 신분당선 pop up in the future. It’s burdensome taking the old, slow and crowded other lines sometimes!

    Andrew Matteson 2 years ago Reply


    • Cheers for your comment Andrew. I agree, more of these types of lines can’t come soon enough!

      Andy Tebay 2 years ago Reply


  • I just came across this article when I was trying to figure out how to get home from Yongsan to Gangnam tonight. I hadn’t really paid much attention to that planned extension of the 신분당선, and now am disappointed it may be so far off. At the same time, thanks for posting this info so I can keep my expectations in check! I’m looking forward to the article later this year about the proposed options for that extension.

    Mel 2 years ago Reply


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