TST pays tribute to Wuhan Metro’s 15 glorious years

The metro is long, as it takes several years to build a single line. The metro is short, as it takes only three minutes to cross the Yangtze River.

More than 30 years ago, taking advantage of the opportunity of relocation of the Hankou section of Beijing-Guangzhou Railway, Wuhan planned and constructed Metro Line 1 Phase 1 in the reserved corridor space of the original line, i.e. the section from Zongguan Station to Huangpu Rd. Station of Line 1. This section plays an important transfer role in the current Wuhan urban rail transit network. All the transfer stations on Line 1 are in Phase 1. The project boasts a total length of 10.234 km and 10 stations, all of which are elevated. It is the first step in the construction of rail transit in Wuhan, marking that Wuhan officially enters the era of urban rail transit.

As China’s first CBTC line, Wuhan Metro Line 1 was opened on July 28, 2004, making Wuhan the first city in the central-western China to provide metro service.

This year marks the 15th year of Wuhan Metro’s remarkable development. As TST has witnessed and participated in this process, we sincerely invited TST employees who took part in the CBTC signaling system project of Wuhan Metro Line 1 to tell stories of those glorious years.

Mao Yao (Project Director)

I am deeply attached to the rail transit industry. Since I started my career in 1988, I have been engaged in railway industry, and Wuhan Metro Line 1 Phase 1 was a new starting point for my focus on the urban rail transit industry. At that time, the company’s urban rail transit business had just started, and the entire team had only six key members, so I was honored to be the project director of the first CBTC project in China. But at the same time, I was also worried, because everything was the first attempt, and I was afraid to fail to live up to the expectations of Wuhan Metro’s executives. In February 2002, the preliminary negotiations for the project were initiated. To facilitate the Chinese and foreign parties to reach a consensus as soon as possible, I undertook the translation of all the negotiation documents, and experienced an unprecedented sense of fulfillment in those three months. Then in March 2004, the signal debugging work officially started. The cohesiveness of the team members made me very gratified. With the ideas of safety first, project first and learning first, everyone worked until 2 to 3 o’clock at night and arrived at the site at 9:00 in the morning almost every day, but no one had any complaints. Looking back on the 15 years, everything is vivid in my mind. Today, Wuhan Metro has developed from lines to rings and to networks, covering all the three towns of the city. I am proud to be the first witness of the project.

Cao Hong (Purchasing and Logistics Director)

Wuhan Metro Line 1 is the first CBTC line in China. Back then, all the equipment were imported, with tax-exempt materials imported to Beijing, and non-exempt materials shipped to Shanghai. However, overseas suppliers were not familiar with this, and so many pieces of equipment, cables, etc. were involved. Therefore, the materials were often sent to wrong destinations, causing many obstacles to customs declaration. As a result, I often got calls from the customs after work, being asked to explain the wrongly delivered materials. What is more, there were time differences with suppliers, so I had to work around the clock at that time. This year marks the 15th year of Wuhan Metro’s remarkable development. The changes in those years have been great. Wuhan Metro has grown from the original one line to today’s nine lines. While introducing the CBTC technology, TST has also implemented independent innovation, and developed TSTCBTC® 2.0 which is more suitable for the local market. There is no end to learning and striving. I look forward to a more brilliant future of Wuhan Metro, and hope that TST can be rooted in local market, implement independent innovation, and become a technology-leading company in the field of rail transit signaling.

Li Xiang (Regional Marketing Director)

As soon as I graduated, I participated in Wuhan Metro Line 1 Phase 1 project, responsible for the signal debugging work of the trackside and control center. This is the first CBTC line in China. To be honest, as the first to “eat crabs”, we had pressure in various aspects. I still remember the training delivered by chief engineer Mao Yao at the beginning, and the word “safety” deeply impressed me at that moment. He said to us: “We should ensure personal safety first, and only by this can we ensure the safety of the system equipment and complete the work efficiently!” At that time, all the staff on the site united as one. Every day, we arrived early in the morning to hold the preparatory meeting of the day; before leaving the site at night, we summarized the work of the day. In this way, we spent more than 100 days and nights on the project. This year marks the 15th anniversary of the opening of Wuhan’s urban rail transit, as well as the 15th year of my career in the rail transit industry. I have been sticking to the career and deeply grateful. In Wuhan, the thoroughfare of nine provinces, urban rail transit is very important for the construction of its in-city transportation network. I firmly believe that the future development of Wuhan’s urban rail transit will be more brilliant. I am also looking forward to a brilliant future of TST. I hope it will stay true to the mission and keep innovation.