The National High Speed Rail Corporation Ltd (NHSRCL) has signed a Rs 3,429 crore contract involving some of the most complex engineering and implementation of latest cutting edge building technologies ever undertaken in the Indian Railways' 168-year-old history.
NHSRCL inked the agreement with the JV of PSU IRCON International and Ahmedabad-based DRA Infracon for the design and construction an 18 km viaduct between the cities of Anand and Sabarmati and the design and construction of 2 high-speed rail (HSR) stations of Ahmedabad and Sabarmati for India's first bullet train project, the Mumbai-Ahmedabad High Speed Rail corridor, NHSRCL.
The under constrution 508-km long Mumbai-Ahmedabad High Speed Rail Corridor is the country's first bullet train project to connect India's financial capital of Mumbai with Gujarat's commercial hub Ahmedabad. Of the total project length, 348-km lies in the state of Gujarat, 4-km in the union territor of Dadra & Nagar Haveli and the rest 156-km in the state of Maharashtra. The Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) is funding Rs 88,000 crore of the estimated Rs 110,000 budget.
The Mumbai Ahmedabad High Speed Rail, which passes through Western Railway's Ahmedabad Junction Railway Station, shall be integrated with Saraspur side of the existing Ahmedabad station. The Ahmedabad HSR station will be built over the existing railway platforms 11 and 12.
To ensure seamless integration of the Ahmedabad HSR station with other modes of rail transport, NHSRCL has designed a user-friendly station layout for Ahmedabad.
"An integrated building for passenger transit is planned on the east side of the existing railway station, where passengers will be able to swiftly switch from one mode of transport to another. Equipped with escalators and elevators to facilitate quick passenger movement, the station building will aso house several other conveniences like booking office, lobby, food kiosks, etc.," an NHSRCL spokesperson told Business Today.
"The Sabarmati HSR station will also provide seamless connectivity to the passengers as it will be connected to the upcoming Sabarmati Passenger Hub. Both the HSR stations will be sustainable structures with provisions for water conservation and extensive arrangements for the utilisation of natural light," the spokesperson added.
Launched in September 2017 by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Japanese counterpart Shinzo Abe, the project was initially expected to be completed by 2023. However, owing to delays in land acquisition in Maharashtra and the countrywide lockdown announced in March 2021 to contain the first wave of Covid-19 pandemic, the deadline is now extended to 2028. As of date, while 98% and 100% land acquisition has happened in Gujarat and Dadra & Nagar Haveli, only 39% of the land has been acquired in Maharashtra.
In September this year, union railway minister Ashwini Vaishnaw had said that trial run of the first bullet train would happen on the 50-km stretch between Surat and Bilimora in 2026.
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