A lot of signs in the Hong Kong MTR writes:

xxx Station will open 1st quarter of 2015

Is this actually grammatically correct?


closed as off-topic by Janus Bahs Jacquet, tchrist, anongoodnurse, andy256, Chenmunka Dec 29 '14 at 18:38

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  • "Proofreading questions are off-topic unless a specific source of concern in the text is clearly identified." – Janus Bahs Jacquet, tchrist, anongoodnurse, andy256, Chenmunka
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  • Probably not in British English (an implied in the), but the meaning is clear – Henry Dec 28 '14 at 8:25
  • 'British English' doesn't have a governing body to adjudicate on correctness. 'More awkward sounding to many British anglophones' certainly. – Edwin Ashworth Dec 28 '14 at 9:10
  • 2
    It is certainly correct enough for a billboard. – Hot Licks Dec 28 '14 at 15:07
  • 1
    Asking whether something is “grammatically correct” is here considered off-topic proofreading because you do not delineate what specific concern you might have with said something. You should please edit your question to explain where precisely the point of contention lies and what your theories pro and con are, preferably including research about whatever construction is perplexing you and perhaps also other examples similar or dissimilar to the one in question — whatever that question may be. – tchrist Dec 28 '14 at 15:18

"xxx Station will open 1st quarter of 2015" is not a correctly formed English sentence (you would have to say: "...will open in the first quarter of 2015"). However, it is the sort of thing that you will find on signs, on public notices, in headlines, and so forth, even in Britain.


This phrasing (will open [date]) is certainly reasonable and I've seen it written on signs and other things here in the United States quite a bit.

Though… it may not fit some definitions of grammatically correct. I'm not sure which, as you haven't specified any.

  • Just so: what does "grammatically correct" really mean here anyway? Everything has a context, including marquees, newspaper headlines, and telegrams. – tchrist Dec 28 '14 at 20:13

It's perfectly acceptable in day-to-day American English to omit prepositions for "point in time" expressions, and it's especially common in news media, e.g. "Things will improve, the President announced Monday". The President did not announce Monday itself, he merely made an announcement on Monday.

It is much rarer in British English and would seem very terse. On the sign pictured above it seems a little out of place as it's a complete sentence with plenty of space, though it's perfectly intelligible; on the other hand it might not be out of place on a traffic sign where space is much more limited: "Road reopens 8 Jan 2015".

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