Delhi:New Metro corridor set for completion by year end
The Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) seems to be focusing all its energies on the 6.36-kilometre Vishvavidyalaya-Jehangirpuri line, which the corporation is planning to open a record 10 months ahead of schedule. If all goes as planned, the extension — which will ferry over 1.51 lakh commuters by 2011 — will be operational by December 2008.The new Metro link, which will add five more stations to the existing Line 2 from Central Secretariat to Vishvavidyala, is partly underground until the next station at GTB Nagar, after which the rest of the line will run elevated.The track laying has started in the tunnels as well as elevated portions, and the corporation is planning to complete this by September this year. All the civil work in the underground section is already complete, and finishing is in progress. Even construction of the elevated sections is progressing at a very fast pace. A different feature of the new section is that the elevated stations are all “hanging” from the sides of the bridge. The station design is such that of the 24-metre width, nine metres is a full structure that stands tall in the middle of the road — on the central verge — from the ground level itself.On the upper levels, the station building extends about 7.5 metres from each side, with no pillars or other support connecting to the ground. So, when it is seen from the road, it appears as if the sides of the building are “hanging” from the central structure.The entries and exits to all stations will be uni-directional, which means that one staircase will be reserved for people to enter while another one on the same side reserved for those exiting. With the ridership expected to increase considerably with Phase II getting operational, this is being done to avoid conflict at the entry points and make the journey smoother.At congested Azadpur, which will become a four-level crossing after completion of the Metro line, with an underpass, surface level crossing, flyover and Metro being the topmost layer, DMRC is also planning to develop a mall. Spread across a sprawling 30,000 square metres, the Corporation has roped in a private builder to construct the Azadpur station on 6,000 sq-m. The building will have shopping areas on the ground and first floors, while the top two floors will house the concourse and platforms for Delhi Metro. DMRC has applied for change of land-use of remaining land, where a larger mall is being planned.The new line will add a lot of riders to the existing Line 2, which will be extended until Gurgaon and Badarpur from the other end at Central Secretariat. The DMRC also has plans to extend this line further from Jehangirpuri to Badli. This 3.42 km extention with two stations, is presently scheduled for Phase III. But if the portion until Jehangirpuri is commissioned by this year, the extension will also be constructed in Phase II itself.