The Western Railway (WR), which has reached its saturation point, is slowly converting 9-coach rakes to 12-coach — increasing the carrying capacity by 33% — and will add 32 new services by November 14.
Every day, 1,210 train services carry 33 lakh commuters between Churchgate and Virar, of which 766 are 12-coach trains. The number will now go up to 798.
This, however, means that the number of nine-car services would come down to 412.
“Any increase in the number of trains would affect the punctuality and so we are looking at converting nine-rake trains to 12-coach,” said S Chandrayan, chief PRO, WR.
“There is no set deadline for this process,” Chandrayan added.
According to officials, in the past three years, the number of commuters travelling by train has gone up by 6% while the number of 12-car train services has increased by 56%.
However, the recent addition would only benefit those traveling up to Borivli.
Of the 32 services, 22 will be on the Churchgate-Borivli stretch, six to Andheri, two to Bandra and one to Malad and another between Mahalaxmi and Borivli.
Meanwhile, the Western Railway has to wait for another six months to get 26 more trains under the phase-I of Mumbai Urban Transport Project. These new trains would allow them in conversion from 1,500-volt direct current to 25,000-volt alternating current.