Mumbai metro rail set to take off

November 4th, 2008 - 8:51 pm ICT by IANS  

Mumbai, Nov 4 (IANS) Mumbai will have a metro railway project in four years as the central government has granted its ‘in principle’ approval for the viability gap funding of Rs.15.32 billion for its first phase, an official said Tuesday.“With this approval, the project will get a much-needed thrust and it will facilitate its completion within the next four years,” said Dilip Kavathkar, joint director, Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA).

The total cost of the first phase - which will link Charkop-Bandra-Mankhurd suburbs spanning from the northwest to the mainland with a 38-km line, is expected to cost Rs.61.92 billion, out of which the central government has given its nod for the viability gap funding of Rs.15.32 billion.

The project is being implemented in a public-private partnership and the implementing agency will be decided soon, said Kavathkar.

The line will have a total of 27 stations and help improve the southern-northern and eastern-western connectivity, bringing relief to the Mumbaikars, apart from enabling significant savings in fuel and travel time.

Maharashtra Chief Minister Vilasrao Deshmukh, who vigorously pursued the matter with the central government to get the viability gap funding approval, said that “the decision will help strengthen the Mumbai Metro Railway”.

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