Monday, February 21, 2005

Rs 1,180-crore annual extra benefit from metro rail

Rs 1,180-crore annual extra benefit from metro rail
New Indian Express

BANGALORE: As the Government talks of launching the Bangalore Metro Rail project by this May, how will this massive Rs. 6,300-crore, five-year project benefit the people of this city?

A State Government sponsored study has been able to put a figure to the total benefit that would accrue within a year of metro rail starting operations. It’s a whopping Rs. 1,180 crore. The metro will benefit the city in these ways: By making commuting more convenient, reducing traffic congestion and fuel consumption and exerting less strain on the roads. It will also reduce the number of accidents and vehicular pollution.

The study has been able to estimate the various benefits in rupee terms. The total benefit is roughly 19 percent of the project cost. Which means that though in actual terms the project will take 16 years of operation to start earning profits, it will have paid for itself in terms of tangible benefits within five years of operation.

Besides obvious benefits such as providing an efficient, safe and convenient means of transport in all four directions to 8.20 lakh commuters per day, the metro will connect 32 stations in the city. The rail will take no longer than 33-45 minutes to travel from end to end, thereby reducing commuting time by almost half. The train will have six air-conditioned coaches and will run every five minutes during peak hours. Stations will be set up at one-kilometre intervals.

The metro’s benefits will not cost much. The proposed fare structure shows that it will be at 1.3 times to 1.6 times bus fares, which means that the a commuter pays Rs. 5 - Rs. 12 depending on the distance travelled. The fare hikes will be no more than four percent a year, according to the official proposal.

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