Shunting yard woes may diminish double line benefits

Shunting yard woes may diminish double line benefits

Saturated capacity in city, Mysuru stations escalating travel time

Shunting yard woes may diminish double line benefits

With Tipu’s armoury relocated to its new place, the Mysuru-Bengaluru track doubling work on the remaining 1.7-km stretch near Srirangapatna is set to be completed by April.

The congestion at city and Mysuru railway stations will, however, limit the benefits of the second line. Bengaluru Divisional Railway Manager Sanjiv Agarwal told DH they have already exploited the full potential of the second line.

“The pending work near Tipu’s armoury was not a huge bottleneck. Over the last four years, we have reduced travel time of 12 trains on that route by nearly 30 minutes. After the completion of doubling, we can save a maximum of 10 minutes. We need to decongest the KSR-City Railway Station in Bengaluru to move trains fast,” he said.

Many trains from Mysuru, except Shatabdi, are usually made to wait at Kengeri or Jnanabharati stations for 30 minutes, which goes up to nearly an hour for passenger trains.

The Mysuru station, too, is working to full capacity. The upcoming terminal at Kadakola, to be built at a cost of Rs 65 crore, is expected to ease the situation.

As many as 18 trains run between Bengaluru and Mysuru daily, including weekly and bi-weekly ones. In addition, there are DEMU and MEMU trains that run on the same route, except on Sunday.

The KSR station, with 10 platforms, handles more than 130 trains every day and the number crosses 145 on some days on account of weekly, biweekly and other trains. “There is a crisis due to lack of a shunting yard. The Baiyappanahalli coaching terminal, which we want to build in two years, will solve this problem,” the divisional railway manager (DRM) said.

The Railways swapped land with BBMP to get 3.3 acres near Binny Mills, where it planned to establish pit lines to park the idling trains to free the lines in the KSR station. When asked about this, the DRM said the project was technically not feasible. “We can’t establish pit lines in the area. Instead, we have decided to focus on Baiyappanahalli terminal,” he said.

Sources said the average speed of trains can be increased from 65-85 kmph to 90 kmph, if they can get a shunting yard. At present, only Shatabdi Express runs at a speed of 90-100 kmph. “Once the terminal is ready, trains do not have to wait for signals outside Bengaluru. This will cut 30 minutes of travel time,” the source added.