Cost of newly-inaugurated Metro lines up by 7-8%

Published on Jan 21, 2023 11:44 PM IST

Mumbai: The newly-inaugurated Metro lines have become costlier for the state exchequer owing to delays

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ByShashank Rao

Mumbai: The newly-inaugurated Metro lines have become costlier for the state exchequer owing to delays. Sources said that there is a rise in cost by 7-8% over and above the current cost of 12,600 crore spent on construction of the Metro 7 (Andheri East to Dahisar East) and Metro 2A (Dahisar East and DN Nagar in Andheri West).

Mid last year, when the phase-1 of the two lines were opened for the public, the government had claimed that the entire network will be opened on August 15. However, the work got delayed.

“Any infrastructure project would see slight delays. We expect a cost escalation of 7-8% on the total cost of these two metro projects together,” a Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) official said.

RTI activist Anil Galgali, who had sought information from the MMRDA about the current status of the metro work, claimed that the contractors were fined for the delay. In August 2021 as well, the MMRDA issued show cause notices to contractors for delay in completing metro station works.

The Metro 2A project completion cost was 6,410 crore, while that of Metro 7 was at 6,208 crore. Asian Development Bank and National Development Bank were the funding agencies for both the lines.

Meanwhile, the 35-kms long network covering the eastern and western parts between Andheri and Dahisar is catching the attention of citizens.

On January 20, the day after Prime Minister Narendra Modi threw open both the Metro lines, the MMRDA operated 236 trips from their fleet of 24 rakes, which ferried 84,929 passengers on both the lines.

As per figures shared by Maha Mumbai Metro Operations Corporation Ltd (MMMOCL), which takes care of the metro rail’s operation and maintenance, at least 36,116 passengers travelled on the 16.5 km-long Metro-7, while 48,813 travelled on the 18.6 km-long Metro 2A on Friday.

On Saturday, both the Metro lines recorded a footfall of 1,10,238 passengers till 8pm. The officials were expecting the weekend to witness good demand from the public though they believe that the actual test would be during weekdays starting January 23.

“We are hoping that motorists will switch over to Metro. This will certainly reduce vehicular traffic on both Western Express Highway and Link Road. We will closely monitor the situation for the next one month to gauge the demand,” the MMRDA official said.

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