consortium led by Anil Dhirubhai, Ambani Group
company Reliance Energy Ltd and Mumbai Metropolitan
Region Development Authority on Thursday
bagged the contract for the Rs 2,356 crore Phase-I
of the ambitious Mumbai Metro Rail project.
The work on the 11 km Versova-Andheri-Ghatkopar
corridor, which comes under phase-I, will start by
June and the foundation stone will be laid by Prime
Minister Manmohan Singh, Maharashtra Chief Minister
Vilasrao Deshmukh said.
The first corridor will be completed within three
years by a special purpose vehicle (SPV)
formed by Mumbai Metro-I consortium.
The other corridors in the first phase include 38
km Colaba-Mahim-Charkop route and 14 km Bandra-Kurla-Mankhurd
route, the Chief Minister said.
Deshmukh said the Metro Phase-I
will be implemented on a Build-Own-Operate-Transfer
(BOOT) basis for the period of 35 years of which the
first five years will be for construction.
Notably, the project has been allotted a week after
Reliance-led consortium drastically cut down the viability
gap funding (VGF) from Rs 1251 crore to Rs
650 crore, as desired by the Maharashtra government.
"REL expected a rate of return at 26
per cent but we convinced them that nowhere in the
world was there such a rate of return on public transport.
Accordingly, the consortium agreed on 15 per cent
rate of returns," MMRDA
Chairman T Chandrashekhar said. Out of the Rs 650
crore of VGF, 20 per cent (about Rs 130 crore) will
be contributed by the Central government and the remaining
by the State government.
The Mumbai Metro Rail Master Plan will be completed
in three phases covering total of nine corridors at
a cost of Rs 19,500 crore.
The first corridor, Versova-Andheri-Ghatkopar, will
be on an elevated route with elevated stations and
will connect densely populated areas of Western and
Eastern suburbs cutting travelling time from 70 minutes
to 21 minutes.
It aims at answering the most congested two-way
movement throughout the day by providing access to
areas such as MIDC, International
Airport and other commercial areas, the Chief Minister
said. The route will have 12 stations, which include
Versova, DN Nagar, Azad Nagar, Andheri, Western Express
Highway, Chakala, Airport, Marol Naka, Saki Naka,
Subhash Nagar, Asalpha Road and Ghatkopar.
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To suit the common man's pocket, the proposed fare
structure is Rs six for up to three km, Rs eight for
a distance of three to eight km and Rs ten for a distance
over eight km.
The Metro will have air-conditioned compartments,
escalators, lifts for senior citizens, automatic fare
collection centres and automatic door closure system.
The construction work on the corridor will commence
by October-November 2006 and it will be ready for
commuters by December 2009, Chandrashekhar said.
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