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From Sep 26, take a Metro to airport

delhi Updated: Sep 14, 2010 01:18 IST
Subhendu Ray

The Delhi Metro's Airport Express Line is scheduled to kick off services for airport-bound passengers between September 26 and 29. However, as promised earlier, it will not provide round-the-clock service, in the initial phase.

"Everyday, about three to four hours will be kept aside for maintenance. We will also suspend services for a few hours when international flight frequency is low. However, we have plans to make the service available round-the-clock at a later stage," said an official of Reliance Infrastructure, which has been constructing the airport express line and will operate the service, along with the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) under the PPP model, for a period of 30 years.

"Initially, we are expecting a daily footfall of 20,000-25,000 commuters during peak hours," the official added.

According to Reliance Infrastructure officials, the company has completed trial run on the 20-km-stretch between Dwarka Sector-21 and Shivaji Stadium stations.

In the final stages of the trial, the hi-tech, superfast trains will begin plying on the entire 23 km-stretch of the Airport Express Line, at a speed of 135 km per hour.

Initially, the trains will ply at 10-minute intervals. Later, this will be brought down to three-four minutes, said sources.

The trials are being conducted by the Research, Designs and Standards Organisation (RDSO) — under the Ministry of Railways.

Besides emergency braking, distance trials were also conducted on both wet rail and dry rail conditions to check the braking distance in the event of an emergency.