South India’s first ever underground metro section, connecting the east and west corridor of Bengaluru’s metro rail project, was inaugurated recently. With the operation of phase one, people travelling from Bayappanahalli to Mysuru Road, a distance of 18.10 km can be covered in approximately 35 minutes. This planned infrastructure development resulting in reduction in travel times, will not only give a boost to the residential locations along the way but is likely to create newer locations. Analysts also point out that there have been development of premium housing projects along Metro lines, in India.
The 4.8-km-long underground section, from Cubbon Park to City railway station, completes the 18.10-km-long east-west corridor, also called Purple Line.
The underground section that passes through Vidhana Soudha, the state secretariat, consists of five stations. The cost of construction for this stretch was about Rs 2,000 crore.
The section was inaugurated by chief minister Siddaramaiah and union urban development minister Venkaiah Naidu. They also inaugurated the station in front of Vidhana Soudha, named after BR Ambedkar.
With the completion of this stretch, out of the 42.3 km of Phase 1 of the ‘Namma Metro’ project, 33 km is operational. Phase 1 includes the east-west corridor of 18.10 km with 17 stations and 24.2 km of the north-south corridor with 24 stations.
At the inaugural event, Siddaramaiah said that the first phase of Namma Metro was ‘almost 90% complete, while the rest would be completed by November 1 and be free for operation’.
A sum of Rs 13,845 crore has been spent on Phase 1, out of which Rs 5,335 crore was borne by the state government.
“There was delay in completion of Phase 1, as we stumbled up on a rock while working on the underground stretch,” he said. Stating that the second phase of the metro will be about 72 km, Siddaramaiah said, it will cost about Rs 26,405 crore, out of which Rs 9,000 crore will be borne by the state. “Work on the second phase has already started and it is likely to be completed by 2020,” he said.
Naidu added that the feasibility study for Phase 3 was already underway. “With the opening of this line today, the total metro line operational in the country is 316 km, in Delhi, NCR, Kolkata, Bengaluru, Chennai, Jaipur and Mumbai. Around 496 km is under construction in various cities. Another 580 km is under consideration for Vishakapatnam, Vijayawada, Pune, Ahemadabad and others,” he added.