India’s first underwater metro update: Kolkata will soon have the nation’s first underwater metro and commuters will then experience something like never before. The East-West corridor project is likely to be completed by June 2023 under Kolkata Metro Rail Corporation (KMRC). The metro line, which will connect Salt Lake to Howrah via Kolkata with a stretch below the Hooghly river, is currently operational between Sector V and Sealdah stations.
“Target for the commissioning of the balance section from Sealdah to Howrah Maidan is June 2023,” the KMRC said in a statement. Of the total 16.55 km length of the project, 9.30 km length between Sector V and Sealdah is operational. The remaining 7.25 km length is likely to be operational within less than a year’s time, it said.
Completion of the project will bring a huge relief to lakhs of commuters as it will connect the busy Howrah and Sealdah railway stations as well as the North-South Line of the Kolkata Metro at Esplanade.
About the project:
Of the 16.6-km-long east-west corridor stretch, 520 meters will be under the river bed of the Hooghly river. The tunnel corridor is built 33 meters below the riverbed and will connect Kolkata to Howrah. The tunnel will have 1.4m-wide concrete rings and hydrophilic gaskets to prevent water from entering the tunnel. This metro connectivity will help reduce travel time between Sector V to Howrah. The train will be running at a depth equal to a 10-story structure underwater.
The cost of the project is estimated to be Rs 8,600 crore.
Speaking of the facilities and safety measures being provided in the project, there will be walkways in the tunnels for evacuation of passengers in case of emergency. Passage work has been done keeping in view the technical problems that might arise inside the water tunnel area. Hence a special passage has been made so passengers can evacuate during such a situation.
(With inputs from PTI)