Centre to unveil new suburban railway network for Bengaluru

Centre to unveil new suburban railway network for Bengaluru

Ahead of the Assembly elections in Karnataka, the Centre is likely to announce the mega suburban railway project for Bengaluru on a self-financing model.

With the infrastructure for the current suburban railway plan not taking off due to the differences between the Karnataka government and the railways on the sharing of costs, the NDA government is planning to roll out a new project to decongest the IT city.

According to the proposal, an elevated corridor of 170 km will be built along the existing railway routes in and around Bengaluru.

Since the railways has already rolled out a plan to develop Baiyappanahhali and Bengaluru City as world-class stations, the proposed project involved developing Banaswadi, Yelahanka, Yeshwantpur, Kengeri, Cox Town, Malleswaram, Ramanagaram, Whitefield, Doddaballapur and Nelamangala stations with modern amenities.

Since the new lines will be elevated, the railways plans to introduce high-speed trains, which can run up to 90 to 125 km an hour, said an official in the railways.

According to the proposal, which is being prepared by the ministry, funds for the project would be raised through monetising the land parcels available with the railways in and around Bengaluru.

PPP for funds

Since the project cost will be around Rs 10,000 crore to Rs 12,000 crore, the railways will also look at raising funds through public private partnership (PPP) in developing stations and other infrastructure.

In the project, private railway operators and developers will be engaged in different tasks for developing the suburban railway corridor, a senior official in the railways told DH.

The ministry may also ask the Karnataka government to share part of the cost and allocate some land for station development as well as the rolling stock (trains) yards in the city, the official said.

Though the suburban railway network for the IT city has been pending for long, it failed to take off due to differences between the railway ministry and the state government on sharing of cost as well as land issues.

Though the railways had sought some land from the state government for setting up a rolling stock yard in the city, it was learnt that the land offered was insufficient.

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