...as Kovai mulls Lite, non-Lite options
CHENNAI: For the much anticipated Coimbatore metro rail, the Chennai Metro Rail Limited (CMRL) is working on feasibility options for both Lite Rail Transit (LRT) or Lite Metro and Mass Rapid Transit System (MRTS) or regular Metro with the cost-effectiveness for each.
As the Detailed Project Report (DPR) for the construction is underway, CMRL is also considering the ‘at grade’ option beyond the city limit.
CMRL, the Project Executing Agency (PEA) for metro rail construction in the city, is actively working on preparing the DPR for 42 km under the phase 1 project.
Though the study area is 140 km, CMRL is currently keen on commissioning phase 1 with the most effective option for the city.
Speaking to DT Next, a higher official with CMRL said, “Though the project has been given a nod for LRT in Coimbatore, the agency is still considering both LRT and MRTS, in terms of cost-effectiveness and capacity. Though LRT might be cheaper compared to MRTS, its capacity is only 70 per cent.”
“Hence, considering the longevity and capacity, MRTS stands out to be a viable and fair option. Likewise, the same is examined for Madurai metro in its feasibility study,” added the official.
‘At grade’ optiontoo probed for Kovai Metro
When asked about the other reasons for the delay in commissioning the phase 1 project, the official explained that several aspects are being considered in Coimbatore; one of which is the ‘at grade’ (station rooted on any grade besides elevated and underground stations) option.
“Attuning to certain conditions in Coimbatore city, we have considered ‘at grade’ option beyond the city limit. For this, additional land will be required, which we are in talks with highways and other departments. All this is taking time, however, once these stages are completed, the project will move swiftly,” the official noted.
Incidentally, CMRL confirmed that Madurai does not support the ‘at grade’ option for metro construction.
According to the DPR, the Coimbatore metro is planned for three phases. Under phase 1, corridor 1 will operate from the Vellalore bus terminal to PSG Foundry (via Ukkadam) along Avinashi Road for 31.2 km. Corridor 2 will operate from Coimbatore Collectorate to Valliyampalayam Pirivu along Sathy Road for 14.1 km.
The estimated cost of construction is Rs 9,424 crore, which is likely to be over by 2027.
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