After a delay of around six months, City and Industrial Development Corporation of Maharashtra Ltd (CIDCO) is now stepping up to put its Metro rail project back on track.
The first phase of construction of metro stations will commence in the next two weeks, after soil testing at sites of proposed stations are completed. According to CIDCO officials, the process is in its final stage, and they are all set to begin constructing 11 stations on the 11.10-km Belapur-Pendhar route.
“Soil sampling at metro station sites is being done in order to understand nature and physical properties of the soil. We anticipate construction of the 11 metro stations will commence in the next two weeks,” said N S Pitale, additional chief engineer of Metro rail project, CIDCO.
CIDCO’s ambitious metro project has been dogged by various technical and policy-related issues in the past year, but now officials are optimistic about meeting the May 2014 deadline. “All 11 stations would be constructed in 20 to 22 months and electrification work, signalling and laying of tracks would be done simultaneously. So, we anticipate that the Metro rail will be operational by the cut-off date of May 2014,” said Pitale.
CIDCO, the nodal agency of the project, will develop the venture in two stages. In the first, the Belapur-Pendhar corridor would be built, while a network from Pendhar to the proposed new international airport would be developed in the second stage, which is presently in the planning stages.
The proposed 11 stations have been divided into two groups, and CIDCO has awarded the contracts to a consortium of three private companies for Rs 321 crore. Although the work on the ongoing Metro project is behind schedule, CIDCO officials claim that the latest deadline would be met.
The 11 proposed metro stations: CBD Belapur Terminal, Sector 7, Science Park, Utsav Chowk, Sector 11, Sector 14, Central Park, Pethapada, Sector 34, Panchanand and Pendhar Terminal