Cities cannot be linked with Metro, says Sreedharan

Cities cannot be linked with Metro, says Sreedharan

Principal Adviser to the Andhra Pradesh government on Metro services, E Sreedharan, has said that the proposed Metro train in Vijayawada is an intra-city service and not an inter-city service, disappointing people from the Guntur-Tenali-Mangalagiri region on the other side of the Krishna river.

Guntur district, which lost out to Vijayawada in becoming the capital of residual state of Andhra Pradesh, feels let down with the metro project remaining within the precincts of Vijayawada city as the expert committee that visited the capital city region felt that expanding a city service like Metro to other cities could be a costly affair.

E Sreedharan, a renowned engineer, was associated with Konkan Railways project and Delhi Metro Rail Corporation, is assisting the AP government in building a metro rail system in the capital region.

The government has requested him to study the feasibility of building metro corridors in the Vijayawada-Yedlapadu region covering Mangalagiri, in Guntur and the Vijayawada-Tenali corridor covering Mangalagiri and Guntur, linking all major towns in the region.

Sreedharan’s team, after conducting a survey, made it clear that both Metro work will be undertaken in Vijayawada in two phases and ruled out Metro for Guntur and Tenali.

The people of Guntur  feel that daily at least 33 different trains pass through the Guntur station and the 35 km distance between the two cities houses several hospitals and engineering colleges along with the Acharya Nagarjuna University. Thousands of students from Vijayawada commute to the university every day.

Addressing a press conference, Sreedharan said the project could begin within a year, if the state government and the people of Vijayawada city cooperate.

“Metro train is purely an intra-city concept. We never suggest linking of neighbouring cities as it is very cost-intensive,” he said. Sreedharan’s team identified two routes running into 26 km for the first phase. The plan is to have at least one station at each kilometer.

“There is not much of a need for land acquisition as the pillars will come on the median. This way, we can make it economically viable if not a profitable venture,” he said.

Vijayawada Metro could be a lighter version of its counterpart in Hyderabad designed to carry about 30,000 people per hour per direction. 

The project will be a joint venture between the Union and state governments with the major stake by the Union government. Initial estimates put the project cost at Rs 7,500 crore. Detailed report will be ready by the beginning of 2015.

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