The Lucknow Development Authority (LDA) is zeroing on government land on Kanpur road to set up a maintenance and operation depot for the ambitious Metro rail project. For this, the portion of the land housing 32 Battalion Provincial Armed Constabulary (PAC) in Sarojini Nagar is emerging as the best choice.
After a survey of the government land along both sides of Kanpur Road, a proposal in this regard has been sent to the state government. Principal secretary (home), who is analysing the proposal, would take a final call. Officials said if the proposal gets a go-ahead from the government, the PAC battalion -- spread over 70 acres -- would be relocated to a 50-acre gram sabha land near New Jail in Mohanlalganj.
“Though the final decision is yet to be taken, it is very likely that the PAC land would be used for the purpose,” said an official.
The LDA has been on the lookout for land on Kanpur Road for quite some time. Among the options provided by the district administration, the development agency ultimately chose the PAC campus because of its large area (70 acres).
The construction of the depot would also require demolition of some portion of the PAC building. “The LDA wants a 50- acre government land for the purpose. Given the requirement, the authority is not left with many options. They plan is to use 50 acres for the depot and the remaining 20 acres for a different project,” added the official.
Ideally for the proposed 23-km North-South corridor (from Lucknow airport to Munshipulia), the LDA would require two depots on either side. But there is no vacant area on the Munshipulia side. So, the facility proposed on the PAC campus, officials said, promises to be the main depot of the project. It's infrastructure would include a test track, depot workshop, an operational control room and a sub-station. It would also offer space for inspection shed, stabling sheds, automatic train washing plant and interior cleaning facilities. “The depot would cater to all inspection, maintenance, washing and administrative needs of the Metro rail,” said the official. Earlier this month, the high power committee headed by chief secretary Jawed Usmani gave a green signal to the Lucknow Metro Rail Corporation, the special purpose vehicle (SPV) that would oversee the project and put state capital on the fast track by giving it the most modern mode of public transport.