Monday, March 01, 2010

THE MARCH AHEAD...

THE MARCH AHEAD...
With track-laying work progressing and engineers digging underground, the first 7-km stretch of Bangalore Metro enters a crucial stage in the next few days. TOI gives an overview
Aarthi R | TNN

Bangalore: The Metro’s going underground, finally. With preparatory work along the East-West corridor almost reaching completion, actual digging will start in 10-15 days. This also includes the busy Ambedkar Veedhi.
The initial days will mainly focus on the 4.8-km stretch along the East-West corridor — from Minsk Square to City railway station at Majestic.
A major challenge here is alternative roads. At present, work on the alternative road at Minsk Square is in progress and the one in front of Vidhana Soudha is almost complete; the latter will open to traffic soon. But with no clear court permission yet for the second alternative road in front of the high court, BMRC is looking at other options, and is ready to block this part of the road too.
“The road here is a crucial part of the traffic diversion plan on this busy stretch. We are awaiting the court’s permission. If we don’t get it, we will have to close this road completely since the one in front of Vidhana Soudha will be opened. We will discuss the matter with the government soon,” BMRC MD N Sivasailam told TOI.
The security counter near Gopala Gowda Circle will remain untouched. Despite plans to demolish it to make way for the alternative road through Vidhana Soudha, BMRC has now decided to retain it and circumvent the road instead. Also, digging for the ramp portion on the eastern side near BRV Grounds has started, and work at the western-end beyond Majestic bus station will begin in another 10 days.
The cost of civil work along the corridor is estimated at Rs 996 crore. This includes work on the five stations, excluding Majestic. Underground work along North-South corridor is expected to start with Majestic station after March.
“Tenders for both have been floated and are likely to be finalized by March third week. We will begin work 15 days after this,” a BMRC spokesperson told TOI.
ON THE TRIAL TRACK
The first trial track on M G Road will be ready in 10 days. The result of this trial run will decide the fate of the actual track work, along the entire stretch from Byappanahalli depot to the cricket stadium.
According to BMRC engineers, this will be a 15-20 metre stretch starting from Nalli Arcade junction till Anil Kumble Circle. “This trial track is for checking track dimensions and not for the load. The actual tracks will be laid soon after this test. Work along the elevated stretches on Reach-1 will continue till August,” one of the engineers said.
The mould for this trial track is being prepared, laying concrete plinth over the viaduct. Then steel rails will be fitted.
FACT FILE: BANGALORE METRO
Length (underground): 8.8 km
Stations underground: East-West corridor: Minsk Square, Vidhana Soudha, Central College, City railway station and Majestic. North-South corridor: Majestic, Chickpet and City Market
Underground stretch of Bangalore Metro will have two stretches — UG 1 (Swastik to K R Road) and UG 2 (M G Road to Leprosy Hospital on Magadi Road). The overall cost for both is Rs 3,100 crore. UG 1 stretch will begin from Swastik and pass through Majestic, Chickpet, Victoria-Vani Vilas Hospitals and City Market, ending at K R Road. UG 2 stretch will start from M G Road and end at Leprosy Hospital on Magadi Road, passing through Vidhana Soudha, K R Circle, K G Road and Majestic. Both the stretches will criss-cross at Majestic.
WORK IN PROGRESS
Digging work along 4.8-km underground stretch in East-West corridor Trial track testing on elevated stretches along M G Road Station work on S V Road and M G Road


The road here is a crucial part of the traffic diversion plan on this busy stretch. We are awaiting the court’s permission. If we don’t get it, we will have to close this road completely since the one in front of Vidhana Soudha will be opened. We will discuss the matter with the government soon. For now, the issue rests there until something comes up
— N Sivasailam, MD, BMRC

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