In seven years, Metro 3 cost up by over 60%
All stations of Phase 1 from Aarey to Bandra-Kurla Complex (BKC) are expected to be completed by December 2023, while Phase 2 (the BKC-to-Cuffe Parade route) is expected to be open by June 2024.
Mumbai: Public money is flowing through the tunnels of the Colaba-Bandra-Seepz Mumbai Metro 3 network. The cost of the 33.5-km long metro line has exceeded ₹37,275 crore, substantially up from its original estimated cost of ₹23,136 crore. This comes at a time when work on one of the major contributors to the delay, the Aarey depot and metro station, is picking up pace.
Officials from the Mumbai Metro Rail Corporation Limited (MMRCL) said that the overall project work was 79.8 percent complete, including 91.3 percent of civil works and 47.5 percent of systems works. All stations of Phase 1 from Aarey to Bandra-Kurla Complex (BKC) are expected to be completed by December 2023, while Phase 2 (the BKC-to-Cuffe Parade route) is expected to be open by June 2024.
At ₹37,275 crore, the authorities are spending almost ₹1,113 crore per kilometre of the Metro-3 line. In August last year, the Eknath Shinde-led government had approved an increase of ₹10,000 crore. Back then, the total cost had touched ₹33,405 crore from the original cost of ₹23,136 crore.
Work on the 33.5-km-long metro line started in 2016, at which time the cost per kilometre was over ₹690 crore. The authorities have been stating that the delays in acquiring the Aarey depot led to a loss of ₹5.87 crore per day.
As of February end, nearly 50 percent of Metro 3 stations are 90 percent complete. Of the 27 Colaba-Bandra-Seepz stations, MMRC has achieved advanced completion in 13 stations. The least amount of work has been carried out at Aarey, the only on-ground station on the entire network.
The Aarey depot can accommodate 31 rakes with 29 stabling lines. Phase 1 requires a parking space for nine rakes, which is being developed separately. There is a separate area where 20 additional rakes can be parked. The tracks are already laid and other elements are being readied for accommodating the eight-coach trains.
MMRC is also conducting trial runs of two metro rakes on a 650-metre stretch. The authorities will receive two more rakes in the next fortnight. The work on the Aarey metro station is also underway. Sources said that this will be close to Seepz station of Metro 6, and in the near future, the two stations on Metro 3 and Metro 6, which are barely 150 to 200 meters apart, will be connected.