Kochi to get Phase 1-B metro
The elevated corridor of Metro Phase 1-B extension from SN Junction to Tripunithura is likely to be commissioned by December 2023. Kochi Metro Rail (KMRL) has successfully completed installation of I-girder works of the 1.163-km-long corridor, and the track works will be ready by September, raising the possibility of opening the line within the scheduled time.
Slab works up to the terminal station building is progressing on a fast mode and the work on the concourse area of the station is in the final stage of completion. Electrical and painting works are in progress. The Phase I-B extension project commenced piling work in August 2020 after the award of the contract in July 2020, with a deadline of 20 months. As per the DPR of the project, the location will ease traffic from both eastern and southern sides of Ernakulam and the daily ridership on the line is expected to be around 40,000. The Phase 1-A extension from Petta to SN Junction was opened for service on 1 September, 2022, and further extension of the line from SN Junction to Tripunithura would allow commuters to easily access Tripunithura railway station from the proposed Metro stations.
Moreover, a bus terminal and 22-mtrs-wide road under the Metro’s viaduct, will help to conclude the transit hub project, as envisaged.
Rajasthan CM lays foundation stone for Kaliteer lift project
Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot laid the foundation stone for the Kaliteer lift scheme and inaugurated the Silavat Anicut project in Dholpur district. These initiatives will raise the water level in Dholpur district. The construction of the Kaliteer lift project in Sarmathura tehsil of the Baseri assembly constituency is estimated to cost approximately Rs.643 crore. The project work is expected to be carried out in a time-bound manner.
With this, Parvati and Ramsagar dams respectively will be filled to capacity every year by raising around 180 mtrs. of excess water in the Chambal river during the rainy season. Furthermore, this will ensure water availability in the rivers Bamni, Parvati, and Utangan, and the drinking water will be supplied in three urban and 433 rural areas in the Dholpur district.
Delhi-Noida Chilla elevated road project receives Rs.801 cr approval
Uttar Pradesh Cabinet approved the Rs.801 crore for the Chilla elevated road project to unclog the Delhi-Noida route, which was stalled for years due to funding issues. The construction work of the road is expected to be completed within three and a half years.
On completion, the 5.96 km road will connect Mayur Vihar in Delhi to the Noida-Greater Noida Expressway near Mahamaya flyover, bypassing the traffic from Sectors 14A, 14, 15, 15A, 16 and 18 in Noida. The six lanes road will allow commuters to cross the city borders within minutes. The Noida Authority will fund 50 percent (approx. Rs.393.6 crore) of the project cost, and the remaining will financed by the Central government’s Gati Shakti scheme, which facilitates financial assistance for infrastructure projects.
The Uttar Pradesh State Bridge Corporation (UPSBCL) will issue fresh tender for the elevated road and provide technical supervision while Noida Authority will oversee the project and release the funds.
Maharashtra CM Eknath Shinde inaugurates second phase of Samruddhi Corridor, opening 600 kms of Mumbai-Nagpur route
The second phase of the Samruddhi Corridor between Shirdi and Bharvir in Nashik district was inaugurated by Maharashtra Chief Minister Eknath Shinde. Post inauguration, around 600 kilometres of the total 701-km route between Mumbai and Nagpur is now open for the public. The 80-km stretch under phase 2 will ease the commutation to Shirdi, a famous religious tourist destination, from Mumbai, Thane and Nashik. According to officials, the new road will also enhance connectivity from Vidarbha to various parts of Pune, Ahmednagar and Nasik through an interchange at Gonde in Sinnar. Moreover, the Shirdi-Barvir stretch will help people of Shirdi and its adjoining areas get quick access to medical facilities, said officials. With the Shirdi-Barvir stretch, SMBT Hospital will be within the residents’ reach as the healthcare center is merely 500 metres away from the Bharvir interchange.
Boon to farmers
The Samruddhi Expressway’s Phase 2 stretch will also bring smiles for local farmers (of Shirdi, Ahmednagar and Sinnar) as it will help them to get farm produce to Mumbai quickly owing to decrease in cargo transport time.
According to the officials concerned, the Shirdi-Barvir stretch of Hindu Hrudaysamrat Balasaheb Thackeray Maharashtra Samruddhi Mahamarg comprises six weighbridges, 56 toll booths, three interchanges at three plazas, 23 light vehicular underpasses, 30 underpasses, 18 minor bridges, and seven major bridges.
Route map The 11.141 km of phase 2 stretch, costing around Rs 3,200 crore, passes through seven villages in Kopargaon (Ahmednagar district), 60.969 km in Sinnar and 7.067 km in Igatpuri, both in Nashik district. On December 11, 2022, Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated the The 520-kilometre long first phase of Samruddhi Mahamarg from Nagpur to Shirdi. The stretch cut the travel time between Vidarbha’s largest city and the temple town from 10 hours to five hours.
Officials said that people of 24 districts from Vidarbha, Marathwada and north Maharashtra have benefited from the mega road project.
BPCL Board has approved proposals for three projects worth Rs.51,881 cr
The Bharat Petroleum Corporation’s (BPCL) Board has approved proposals for three projects totalling Rs.51,881 crore, which are to be deployed at refineries in Maharashtra and Madhya Pradesh respectively. The ethylene cracker project at Bina refinery in Madhya Pradesh including the downstream petrochemical plants and expansion of the refinery involves a capex of approx. Rs.49,000 crore. A project comprising petroleum oil lubricants (POL) and lube oil base stock (LOBS) storage installations, along with receipt pipelines at Rasayani in Maharashtra, entails an estimated cost of Rs.1,903 crore. Another proposal is for setting up two 50 MW wind power plants, one at Bina refinery in Madhya Pradesh, and another at Mumbai refinery in Maharashtra. The project is for captive use, with a total project cost of about Rs.978 crore, which comes to Rs.489 crore for each project. The above projects will be taken forward and completed, subject to the fulfilment of various factors including statutory clearances, if required.
Mumbai coastal road project: Major ‘breakthrough’ in underground tunnel work
The Mumbai civic body, Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC), has achieved a major milestone as it completed the execution of a second underground tunnel of the coastal road project located at Priyadarshini Park. The significant infrastructure venture would be led to the suburb of Virar, said Maharashtra Chief Minister Eknath Shinde. The BMC said that the significant breakthrough in the execution of a second underground tunnel of the coastal road project was achieved in the presence of Shinde and Deputy Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis. The tunnel work started around 13 months ago. The tunnel work on the actual road, 10 km in length, is 75 percent complete, while the tunnel digging work between Marine Drive near Princess Street flyover in south Mumbai and Priyadarshini Park has completely been finished, said civic officials. According to the civic body, the finished diameter of the tunnel will be 11 metres while The length of each of the twin tunnels is 2.070 metres with an outer diameter of 12.19 metres. India’s largest tunnel boring machine was used for the construction of the tunnels, said a BMC official and added that Saccardo Ventilation System will be installed in a road transport tunnel for the first time in the country. The tunnels are said to be at the depth of 20 metres under the sea bed. Each tunnel will go with three lanes while the rest of the coastal road will be made of two carriageways of four lanes, reported PTI. The work of digging the second tunnel started on April 26, 2022, while the digging work of the first tunnel was finished on January 10, 2022. The BMC said that the work on the project, costing around Rs.12, 721 crore, started on October 13, 20218 which is expected to be completed in November this year.
DPR consultant appointed for Pune-Nashik Industrial Corridor Project
The Maharashtra State Road Development Corporation (MSRDC) has appointed a Pune-based consultant to undertake a survey, identify land in three districts, and prepare the related development project report (DPR) for the proposed Pune-Nashik industrial corridor project. The appointed consultant, Monarch Surveyors and Engineering Consultants is expected to take nine to 12 months to complete the survey and DPR. Post approval, land acquisition will begin. Monarch is also involved in the survey work and other groundwork for the Nagpur-Mumbai Samruddhi Mahamarg. The corridor will be connected to Pune’s proposed ring road in the Alandi area, and at the other end, it will connect to the Samruddhi Mahamarg and Surat-Chennai expressway.
The proposed six-lane access-controlled 180-km-long expressway to be built with an outlay of over Rs.10,000 crore will pass through rural Pune, Ahmednagar and Nashik districts, and enable faster transportation of cargo. For instance, the transportation of goods or agricultural produce from Pune or Ahmednagar being sent to Jawaharlal Nehru Port in Navi Mumbai will use the proposed industrial corridor and then access Samruddhi to reach the port.
Similarly, it will ease the movement of cargo to Gujarat, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh and Telangana. Further, the project is expected to attract new investments in the said three districts building on stronger connectivity to the port as well as southern states.
J&K to get metro project with spend of Rs.10,600 cr
The UT Government of Jammu and Kashmir has expedited the metro rail project by submitting the Detailed Project Report (DPR) to the central government for approval. The project, with a total investment of Rs.10,599 crore, will allocate Rs.5,734 crore for Srinagar and Rs.4,825 crore for Jammu. The proposed Jammu Light Metro will operate for 17 hours daily throughout the year, while the Srinagar Light Metro will run for 17 hours during summers and 14 hours during the winter season.
The metro rail lines will consist solely of elevated corridors, as underground tunnels were deemed unfeasible. The coaches of the Metrolite system will be modern, lightweight, and constructed from stainless steel and aluminium, equipped with air-conditioning. The Jammu Light Rail System will span 23 km, encompassing 22 stations from Bantalab to Bari Brahmana. Similarly, the Srinagar Light Rail System will cover a length of 25 km, including a 12.5 km stretch from Indira Nagar to HMT Junction and another 12.5 km from Hazuri Bagh to Osmanabad, with 24 stations distributed evenly between the two corridors.
Additionally, the Ministry of Railways has finalized train services to connect Kashmir with major destinations once the Udhampur Srinagar Baramulla Rail Line (USBRL) is completed.
Plans include the introduction of a Vande Bharat train between New Delhi and Srinagar, allowing passengers to arrive in Kashmir in the evening after boarding the train in the morning from the national capital. Furthermore, several other trains are being proposed to establish direct connectivity between Kashmir and prominent destinations such as Mumbai, Rajasthan, Chennai, Kolkata, and Bengaluru.
Kolkata Port proposes innovative tunnel project: Hooghly river’s future
The Syamaprasad Mookerjee Port, also known as Kolkata Port, aims to alleviate congestion in the state capital by constructing an underground tunnel beneath the Hooghly River. Alongside this endeavor, the port trust is considering the installation of an additional floating crane at Diamond Harbour and the development of the first multi-modal logistics park in Kolkata. The port’s chairman, Rathendra Raman, confirmed that talks with a consultant are underway regarding the tunnel project, and a study report is expected in the coming months.
The installation of floating cranes at anchorages to expedite transshipment cargo handling is among the port’s top priorities. The floating crane, positioned at Diamond Harbour, will facilitate the lifting of both cargo and containers.
The port also plans to widen the Diamond Harbour road for improved connectivity to Falta and Roychawk, establish a freight corridor up to Dankuni, and expand NH 116 to connect Kolaghat and Haldia. Moreover, a RoRo jetty on the Howrah side of the Hooghly River is in the pipeline.
To develop the first multi-modal logistics park in Kolkata, the port has initiated the process by inviting expressions of interest for the allotment of 60 acres of land on a 30-year lease. The logistics park will feature a modern warehousing complex equipped with cold storage facilities, a truck terminal, railway connectivity, and other essential amenities.
Maharashtra Cabinet clears Rs.1,710-cr grant to Jigaon project
The Maharashtra Cabinet has approved an additional grant of Rs.1,710 crore on 30 May, 2023 to expedite and complete the Jigaon dam project on Purna river in Nandura in Buldhana district of Maharashtra. The project will be executed by the Vidarbha Irrigation Development Corporation (VIDC) and primarily cater to the Vidarbha region. Once completed, the project would irrigate over a lakh hectare of farmland, and will also cater to drinking water needs of the drought-prone areas of Akola, Buldhana and adjoining districts. The third revised approval was granted to the project in 2019. Prior to starting the dam work, VIDC has constructed five bridges and assembled gates, and activities for the lift irrigation schemes (LIS). Once completed, Jigaon will be the second biggest dam in the region after the Gosikhurd project, which is yet to be completed. Sanctioned in 1997 with a Rs.699-crore outlay, the project cost has escalated several times in the last 25 years.
384 infra projects showed cost overruns of Rs.4.66 lakh crore in March quarter
As many as 384 infrastructure projects, each entailing an investment of Rs.150 crore or more, have suffered cost overruns of more than Rs.4.66 lakh crore in January-March, 2023. According to the Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation, out of 1,566 projects, 384 reported cost overruns and as many as 931 projects were delayed. The Quarterly Project Implementation Status Report (QPISR) on central sector projects (costing Rs.150 crore and above) for the fourth quarter of 2022-23 has revealed key information. The projects cover 443 mega projects (each costing Rs.1,000 crore and above), and 1,123 major projects (of Rs.150 crore and above but below Rs.1,000 crore).
Out of 1,566 projects, 384 projects witnessed cost overruns of Rs.4,66,874.46 crore which corresponds to 21.59 percent of their sanctioned cost. Further, 931 projects were delayed with respect to the original schedule of completion, and for 331 projects, the date of completion was not reported. With regard to the latest approved cost, 285 projects had reported cost overruns of Rs.1,97,069.19 crore. Moreover, 259 projects witnessed both time and cost overruns. The estimated completion cost of these 1,566 projects is reported to be Rs.26,29,193.77 crore. The total expenditure as on 31 March, 2023 was Rs.14,71,873.93 crore which comes to 55.98 percent of the total anticipated completion cost. For these 1,566 projects, Rs.2,81,251.99 crore has been allocated for 2022-23. The percentage of delayed projects went from 41.27 percent in the quarter ending March 2022 to 59.45 percent in the quarter ending March 2023. The major factors cited for time overruns include the environment, forest and wildlife clearances, land acquisition issues, COVID-19-led lockdown and others.
Inox Wind bags 150 MW wind power project from NTPC Renewable Energy
Inox Wind has bagged an order for a 150MW wind power project from NTPC Renewable Energy, a wholly subsidiary of NTPC Green Energy, which is the RE business vertical of NTPC. The project shall be executed in the state of Gujarat. With this the total orders from NTPC stands at 550MW awarded till date to Inox Wind.
Indian govt to inject Rs.1 lakh-cr into airport sector for infrastructure boost
The Union Civil Aviation Minister has announced the government’s plan to invest Rs.1 lakh crore in airports in the near future. The ministry has already formulated comprehensive expansion plans for airports, resulting in a significant increase in the number of airports, heliports, and water aerodromes. Over the past 9 years, the country has witnessed the construction of 74 additional airports, heliports, and water aerodromes, effectively doubling the total count to 148. The government aims to further increase this number to 200 within the next 4 years. To facilitate this expansion, the ministry has devised an investment plan that involves both the private sector and the government.
Furthermore, the throughput capacity of the country’s six major airports, including Jewar and Navi Mumbai airports, currently stands at 22 crores per year. However, with the implementation of the ministry’s plans, this capacity is projected to increase to 42 crores over the next four years. In line with these developments, Indian airlines are also scaling up their operations.
GMDA new metro corridor to cost Rs.6,000 cr
The Gurugram Metropolitan Development Authority (GMDA) will soon commence construction work on the Metro corridor line within a month and is expected to cost around Rs.6,000 crore. The deadline for the new Metro corridor is 2026.
The 28 km metro line will connect the Huda City Centre to Cyber City, and Haryana Mass Rapid Transport Corporation (HMRTC) will supervise its construction. The metro line will initiate from Yellow Line at Huda City Centre and loop back to Cyber City, cutting through a large section of Old Gurgaon. GMDA will prepare the ground for construction and begin the civil work, which will involve shifting utilities along the corridor and clearing the land for construction.
As per the detailed project report (DPR), the Metro line will include 27 elevated stations (i.e., Sector 45, Cyber Park, Subhash Chowk, Udyog Vihar-IV, Udyog Vihar-V and Cyber City and others).The state government will operate the Metro line which will be the first Metro in the city. Once completed, the metro line will connect old and new Gurugram.
PM launches railway projects worth Rs.8,200 cr in Odisha
Prime Minister Narendra Modi virtually launched railway projects worth Rs.8,200 crore in Odisha and flagged off the state’s first Vande Bharat Express. The Puri-Howrah 16-coach Vande Bharat Express will cover the 500 km distance in around 6.5 hours.
The Prime Minister also laid the foundation stone for the redevelopment of Puri and Cuttack railway stations, and dedicated to the nation 100 percent electrification project of the railway network in Odisha, which will ensure lowered operating and maintenance cost. He also inaugurated the doubling of the Sambalpur-Titlagarh rail line, BG rail line between Angul and Sukinda, the third line connecting Manoharpur-Rourkela-Jharsuguda-Jamga, and a new BG line on Bichhupali-Jhartarbha route. As an outcome of the rapid industrial development in the steel, power and mining sectors in the state, there has been increase in passenger traffic, and to this end the projects will help ease the traffic in these sections, the PM stated.