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Metro rail work to be over in 40 months

Special Correspondent

HYDERABAD: L&T Metro Rail (Hyderabad) Ltd, the Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV), formed to construct and run the project plans to complete most work within “36-40 months” since the time of ground-breaking ceremony. And, every three months, different key stages would be done.

“We will work on all the three corridors simultaneously,” affirmed MD V.B. Gadgil at the press conference to announce the financial closure on Tuesday. It would also depend on the government providing the required right of way on the routes.

“We are very much excited about the project, we have a track record of completing them on time and we would like to maintain our reputation,” exclaimed L&T Metro Rail chairman Y.M. Deosthalee. Performance guarantee of Rs. 360 crore was already paid to the State reiterating the commitment to adhere to timeframes.

Fourteen lakh passengers are expected to be carried on all three routes each day with 6.5 lakh on Line One, four lakh each on Line Two and Line Three when operations begin. Three car trains would be run initially to carry 1,000 passengers each. The trains can carry six cars doubling the carrying capacity.

While the maximum speed of each train would be 80 km per hour, the speeds would actually be between 35-40 km/hour as there is a station for almost every kilometre (66 eco-friendly stations) across the three corridors of 71.16 km.

The frequency is going to be three to five minutes during rush hour.

Ninety-five per cent of soil testing was completed for the “technologically challenging and city transforming project” and a lot of background work was being done to reduce inconvenience to citizens during construction. Technical support was coming from the Independent Engineer Louis Berger, General Consultant for concessionaire AECOM.

Mr. Gadgil said the success of Delhi and Kolkata metros had proved that people were willing to shift to public transport if it was safe, efficient and reliable. L&T Senior VP K. Venkatesh said revenue was from ridership and exploiting real estate as part of the Transit Oriented Development (TOD) on the routes.

HMR MD N.V.S. Reddy decried “disinformation” campaign by vested interests against the project and said the project does not affect any heritage structure.

“Metro lines will pass by Clock Tower, Assembly and M.J. Market at an elevated plane several feet away,” he said.

Mr. Reddy argued that a project of such magnitude was bound to attract obstacles and claimed that “only across 0.5 km -- 200 metres of Bade Chowdi and 300 metres of Sultan Bazar -- there are protests by tenant traders and hawkers” but he was confident about dealing with them as discussions were on.

“The State is offering an unprecedented Rs.45,000-Rs.50,000 per sq.yard compensation for acquiring properties. Efforts were also on to provide alternative accommodation to the displaced businessmen.”

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