Bhubaneswar, India (Metro Rail Today): In a significant move to enhance urban mobility and strengthen public transportation, the Odisha government has enlisted the expertise of the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) as a consultant for the construction of Phase-I of the Bhubaneswar Metro Rail project. The estimated investment for this ambitious endeavor stands at a substantial Rs 5,929 crore.
According to an official statement, DMRC will play a pivotal role in advising and overseeing the construction of the metro project. In recognition of their proven track record in successfully operating the metro in the national capital, the Odisha government has allocated Rs 326 crore as consultancy fees for DMRC's services.
The first phase of the Bhubaneswar metro is set to cover a distance of 26 km, connecting Bhubaneswar Airport to Trisulia Square. This ambitious undertaking is expected to be completed within a four-year timeframe. The Odisha cabinet, under the leadership of Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik, granted approval to the metro rail project in a recent meeting.
A noteworthy aspect of this project is the commitment of the Odisha government to bear the entire cost of the metro project in Bhubaneswar and the surrounding regions. The decision to engage DMRC was based on their extensive experience, ensuring that the public transport system in the capital region is not only strengthened but also contributes to accelerated economic growth.
This isn't the first time the Odisha government has explored the possibility of a metro system in Bhubaneswar. In 2014, a feasibility report by Hyderabad-based Balaji Railroad Systems Limited (BARSYL) deemed a full-scale metro economically unviable due to low population density and high project costs. However, learning from past experiences, the current government has strategized to make the project feasible.
Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik, in a proactive move, is set to lay the foundation stone for the metro project on January 1, 2024. This strategic timing precedes the general and assembly polls in the state, emphasizing the government's commitment to prioritizing urban infrastructure and mobility.
The first phase of the Bhubaneswar metro has received the green light with the approval of the detailed project report (DPR). Spanning from Bhubaneswar Airport to Trishulia Square, the project encompasses 20 metro stations, including key locations like Capital Hospital, Rajmahal Square, Vani Vihar, Jaydev Vihar, and Patia. Chief Secretary PK Jena highlighted that the metro track and stations will be elevated viaducts, showcasing a commitment to modern and efficient urban transit.
The partnership between the Odisha government and DMRC marks a crucial milestone in the development of Bhubaneswar's metro system. With a visionary approach, the government is not only addressing the immediate need for robust urban transportation but also laying the groundwork for sustained economic growth. The upcoming foundation stone ceremony on January 1, 2024, symbolizes a commitment to timely and efficient project execution. As Bhubaneswar prepares for a transformative shift in its urban landscape, the metro project stands as a testament to the government's dedication to enhancing the lives of its citizens.