GREATER NOIDA The Greater Noida authority’s chief executive officer Narendra Bhooshan on Tuesday said the new Metro project that was proposed for connecting Noida’s Sector 71 with Greater Noida west’s Sector 2 will be completed and made operational by December 31, 2020.This Metro link will have five stations, of which three will be in Greater Noida west and two will be under Noida’s jurisdiction. The distance covered by the Metro between Noida’s Sector 71 to Greater Noida west’s Sector 1 till Kisan Chowk will be around seven kilometres.“We have directed the Noida Metro Rail Corporation (NMRC) to start work on this project immediately, so that the detailed project report (DPR) can be made without any delay. Once the DPR is ready, the work on the project will begin at the earliest. We aim to complete the project by December 2020,” Bhooshan said.The DPR will identify the new Metro stations and their exact locations, officials said.“The NMRC had assured us that if the project was approved in this board meeting, then we would be able to complete this project by December 2020. The project has been approved in the board meeting, and we have fixed December 31, 2020 as the deadline of completion of this project,” Bhooshan said. After the board’s approval, the project will have to be approved by the state cabinet.The Metro project had been stalled in 2017 on the ground that the route was not economically viable, considering the low population in the areas located along the proposed route. The 15km Metro project connecting Noida’s Sector 71 with Greater Noida’s Knowledge Park 5 was then slated to be made operational by March 2021.With Greater Noida west becoming a hub of housing complexes, the authority decided to revisit the project.The NMRC has decided to extend the Aqua Line from Sector 71 towards Greater Noida West area, which has more than four lakh under-construction flats in different housing complexes.“We have approved this extension because people have started shifting into complexes. We hope by the time the Metro project is ready, this area will have a huge population,” Bhooshan said. As per the funding pattern, the Greater Noida authority will provide ₹151 crore and the Noida authority will contribute around ₹80 crore for this project, officials said.“The remaining funds will be arranged through loans and contributions from Uttar Pradesh and the government of India,” Bhooshan said.Residents, who have shifted into their newly built housing complexes, have welcomed the Metro project extension from Noida to Greater Noida west.“We are happy with the approval of the Metro project, because it will provide a reliable public transport facility in this area. We face problems while travelling to Delhi-NCR areas due to the absence of Metro connectivity. As of now, we have to hire taxis to reach Noida’s City Center to board the Metro,” Vivek Raman, a resident of Gaur City, said.