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Govt approves construction of 82-km rapid transit system connecting Delhi to Meerut

The corridor is expected to connect the cities to the centre with a high-speed dedicated rail connector and serve as many as eight lakh passenger trips per day.

Vandana Ramnani @vandanaramnani1

With an aim to de-congest the national capital, the government on February 19 approved the construction of the priority Delhi-Ghaziabad-Meerut rapid transit system (RRTS) worth Rs 30,274 crore. The decision was taken during a cabinet meeting.

The corridor is expected to connect the cities to the centre with a high-speed dedicated rail connector and serve as many as eight lakh passenger trips per day. According to experts, the transit system is also expected to provide a fillip to economic development along the entire stretch.

"The Cabinet has approved the construction of Regional Rapid Transit System (RRTS) covering a distance of 82.15 kilometres," Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said after the meeting.

Of the 82.15 kilometres (km), 68.03 km would be elevated and 14.12 km would be underground.

According to a study conducted by the NITI Aayog recently, the RRTS is expected to take over a lakh vehicles off the road in the two cities. The study had also said RRTS was the best option for mass transport and for shifting more people from private vehicles to the rail system.

It was recently reported that NITI Aayog had made a detailed presentation to the prime minister’s office comparing the benefits of elevated bus rapid transit (BRT), an extension of Metro rail and RRTS.

The over 82-km RRTS corridor had got stuck after the Delhi government informed the Union Urban Affairs Ministry that it was unable to pay its share of Rs 1,138 crore in the Rs 31,902 crore project.

A few months ago, the Supreme Court had directed all stakeholders to clear the hurdles in the project.

The Delhi-Ghaziabad-Meerut RRTS route is 82 km with 24 stations. The rapid rail is expected to have a speed of 180 kmph. As per the detailed project report, the train is expected to cover the entire distance in 55 minutes.

Metro services with 12 stations on 18 km stretch between Modipuram and Meerut South stations on the RRTS infrastructure will service citizens of Meerut.

The proposed RRTS will be implemented as a joint venture by the National Capital Region Transport Corporation (NCRTC) and the state governments.

The Delhi-Ghaziabad-Meerut RRTS corridor is first of the three prioritized corridors planned for implementation in Phase-1. The other two are Delhi-Gurugram-Alwar and Delhi-Panipat corridors.
First Published on Feb 19, 2019 10:15 pm
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