Kolkata--the city of joy, is all set to welcome India's first 'underwater' metro service. The metro line, which is also the world's cheapest metro services will begin in Kolkata from this week after the partial rollout of the East-West Metro service on February 13. As of now, Kolkata's Metro service caters to the North-South route, stretching from Dum Dum to Garia. The city will now get the East-West Metro, which happens to be the second Metro line in Kolkata after 1984. It is particularly special as a portion of the East-West Metro will run underwater. The new Metro line will connect Salt Lake and Howrah and is expected to be in business by 2021. West Bengal's ruling Trinamool Congress on Thursday decided to protest against the denial of invitation to Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee for the inauguration of the East-West Metro corridor with a senior party MP and an MLA deciding to boycott the function. Senior TMC MP Kakoli Ghosh Dastidar and MLA Sujit Bose have decided not to attend the programme.
Railway Minister Piyush Goyal will flag off the first train under East-West Metro service from Salt Lake on February 13 and the commercial run will start from February 14.
6 new metro stations on East-West Corridor:
1. Sector V
Out of all six, the terminal of Sector V is the biggest. The station has the provision to add two more floors for commercial use. It has a huge parking lot that can accommodate more than 100 cars.
Pros- A little walk will offer commuters the quickest, hassle-free to Sector V from Bypass and it will also be the cheapest option.
Cons- No traditional transport available here, not even a bus route. Walking is the only option here.
It is the only station with five entry-exit points. It is likely that the station will have huge footfall since it is next to city and international bus depot.
Pros- Location wise, this station is the best in Salt Lake. It offers a connection with virtually every section of the satellite city.
Cons- Over-crowding is an issue.
3. Central Park
It is the only single-storey station where the concourse and the platform are on the same level. This station has the best and the largest mural.
Pros- If you are heading to government offices from Bypass, this station will be best. The station also has a strong auto and bus network.
Cons- Locals will avoid this station
4. City Centre
This station is the smallest of the six elevated stations. It doesn't have approach corridors.
Pros: Its location makes it a good commute option for locals. The station is well-connected by auto and rickshaws.
Cons: The residents have petitioned to realign the auto and rickshaw routes
5. Bengal Chemical
The station has been given only partial nod. The fourth entry-exit will have to be built in a year.
Pros: The location is on Bypass which will help commuters. Kadapara offers auto and rickshaw options
Cons: Police wants the commuters to use the underpass.
6. Salt Lake Stadium
It is currently a terminal station and will be the last elevated station when services are extended.
Pros: On EM Bypass, it has several bus routes. Auto s are also available.
Cons: Jaywalking can be dangerous
Kolkata East-West Corridor: All you need to know about India's first 'underwater' metro service:
- The ‘Kolkata East-West Metro Project’ project is 16.6km long, and will include a pair of 10.8-km long rail tunnels that run underground. The remaining 5.8 kms will be at an elevation.
- The tunnel will include a 520-m section that will run under the Hooghly river, which will be India’s first underwater tunnel.
- The underground Metro will stretch from Phoolbagan station up to Howrah Maidan, and will have a total of 6 stations in between, including Phoobagan, Sealdah, Esplanade, Mahakaran, Howrah, and Howrah Maidan. The tunnel will cross the Hooghly river between Mahakaran and Howrah stations.
- After completion, the new Metro line will be able to carry around close to a million people every day—that’s nearly a fifth of the population of Kolkata.
- The drive from Salt Lake to Howrah can take over an hour. The new Metro line will cut this down to less than 30 minutes. Even the river crossing, which can take 15 minutes by ferry and often 30 minutes by road, will now be crunched to just a minute.
- Phoolbagan is the first of the six stations along the East-West Metro that is ready to function and will be inspected by the commissioner of railway safety sometime this month. And the Metro will be ready till 2021.
- The unique feature of this metro is the platform screen doors. The platform screen door will not only prevent accidental fall on tracks but also intentional fall. Inside the metro, we have many new features like the real-time monitory, through which any information which has to be disseminated to the passengers can be done from the control room directly.
- An obstruction detection system has been introduced to protect the passengers
- Around 2,100 passengers can travel at a time on this train which has 6 coaches. The facility of regenerative braking has been introduced so as to indulge in energy conservation practices.
- Generally, there are 2 motormen on a Metro train but there will be only one on the new train. He will be responsible for monitoring the entire set up as the system is mostly machine-controlled.