MTR to Run Advertising Trains

Topic: Public Transport 14 years, 12 months ago

Ever see vehicles driving around the city carrying nothing but billboards? If you have, I bet you’ve thought that these pieces of moving spam are but a total waste of space and energy, since all they accomplish is act as an eyesore.

Well the MTR metro in Hong Kong is going to take it one step further. In between timetabled passenger train services they’re going to be running locomotive-hauled advertising trains through the network! :shock:

artist's impression of a 'Spectacular Mobile Showcase' as seen from a station platform
Artist’s impression of a ‘Spectacular Mobile Showcase’ (source: MTR)

Trains run to small headways on most lines already, so I wonder how they’re going to be able to squeeze these advertising trains into the timetable. But if it is possible, then why not run more passenger trains instead? For much of the day, the network is already too crowded! Granted, these advertising trains (presumably) won’t stop and thus won’t require precious dwell time, but I wonder what commuters are going to think of this seemingly perverse use of network capacity.

These advertising trains will be run with engineering trains that are normally idle during operating hours and will be able to display large 3D objects such as cars. So… they’re going to run spam trains which carry cars around the rail network? The mind boggles!

The press release (PDF) says:

The MTR Corporation is the first to bring to passengers a brand new and innovative form of advertising — the Spectacular Mobile Showcase [...] to enhance passengers’ enjoyment during their MTR journeys.

I’ve always had great respect for the MTR. They run one of the world’s most efficient railway operations, offering value and great customer service. They have a great corporate image too! But this is ridiculous… a “Spectacular Mobile Showcase” to “enhance passengers’ enjoyment”?!?! Now they’re just on crack! (And who comes up with these names, anyway?!)

It’s a train. It’s an ad. It’s an advertising train.

It’s a menace! :roll:

Press Release: Innovative 3D advertising to liven up MTR tracks (PDF)

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1 Comment Add your own

  • . kevin  |  14 years, 12 months ago

    hmm.. doesn’t sound good to me….
    but then… at least we get to see the service locomotives during operation hours =D

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