Fulfilling a long-pending demand of commuters from Pimpri-Chinchwad, the Centre has approved the extension of Pune Metro from Pimpri Chinchwad Municipal Corporation (PCMC) headquarters in Pimpri to Bhakti-Shakti Chowk in Nigdi.
The 4.413-km-long PCMC-Nigdi stretch on Line 1 which runs between Pimpri to Swargate will be elevated with three stations - Chinchwad, Akurdi, and Nigdi.
Work on the route is expected to cost Rs 910.18 crore and is scheduled for completion early 2027,
"I am directed to convey the approval of the Government of India (Gol) for implementation of PCMC – Nigdi Project (Extension of Corridor-1 of Pune Metro Phase-covering a length of 4.413 km at a completion cost of Rs 910.18 crores by Maharashtra Metro Rail Corporation Limited (Maha Metro) with contribution of Government of India in form of grant. The project will be completed in three years and three months from the date of sanction of the project”, read a letter sent by a deputy secretary in the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs to Maharashtra Chief Secretary Sunil Kumar.
The ministry letter said, “Maha Metro shall function as a special purpose vehicle for the implementation of the project, which shall be jointly and equally owned by Government of India and Government of Maharashtra.”
The notification further stated that the Centre’s proposed funding in the form of grant will be Rs 67.02 crore which is 10 per cent of the total project cost, excluding private investment, land, taxes.
Also, any other cost escalation due to price escalation or exchange rate variation leading to increase in the budget of the project shall be borne by the state government, stated the order.
The first phase of the Pune Metro Rail Project consists of two corridors, north-south corridor (Purple line) and east-west corridor (Aqua line), with a total length of 33.2 km and 30 stations.
The 17.5-km-long north-south (NS) corridor from PCMC to Swargate has 14 stations, with a 11.4km elevated stretch and a 6.1km underground section between Range Hills and Swargate. It passes through the industrial area of Pimpri-Chinchwad and further into old Peth areas of the Pune city.
The fully elevated East-West (EW) corridor spans 15.7 km and runs between Vanaz Depot in east and Ramwadi, with 16 stations en-route.
Currently the Pune Metro is operational for a span of 23.6 km which includes PCMC to Civil Court Metro Station and Vanaz to Ruby Hall Clinic, with an interchange at Civil Court Metro Station.
The Centre's decision will expand the foot print of Pune Metro to an impressive 37.613 km covering 33 stations.
However, the Centre has not given its nod for Swargate to Katraj route considered one of the busiest stretches that could attract record footfall.
Earlier in January 2020, the Swargate-Katraj extension’s DPR was presented by the Maha-Metro to the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC). It had estimated the extension to cost Rs 4283.72 crore and have a daily ridership of 95,000 riders in 2027 and 197,000 in 2057.
Hemant Sonwane, director (public relations), Maha-Metro, said, “We are waiting for the Swargate-Katraj extension approval. At present, the proposal of Swargate to Katraj extension is under scrutiny of MoHUA, Thereafter, it will be sent to the Public Investment Board (PIB). As the estimated cost is higher, the proposal will be put up before the Union cabinet for final approval.”
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