The second phase of an expansion project at Lowu railway station, which has just begun, is expected to raise passenger capacity by 3,000 an hour to cope with booming cross-border demand. The $74 million project will increase the size of the inbound platform by 80 per cent, from 519 to 940 square metres. Refurbishment of the departure hall, completed last month, enlarged the area by a third. The project is expected not only to raise the maximum hourly capacity from 22,000 passengers to 25,000 but also increase business opportunities as there will be more space for shops. The Kowloon-Canton Railway Corporation's senior building manager, Fung Wing-yiu, denied the main purpose of the project was to shorten passengers' waiting times to clear immigration. 'The number of days our passengers had to wait half an hour last year was less than 10,' Mr Fung said. 'Our major purpose is to bring comfort to our passengers.' The new phase will include a Disney counter and a commercial area. Moving walkways, extra ticket vending machines, larger washrooms and more turnstiles will all be installed before December next year. There will be no construction work during public holidays.