The 13.1 kilometre Delhi Metro line between Delhi's Yamuna Bank to Noida City Centre (Sector 32) was inaugurated on Thursday as Union Urban Development Miniser S Jaipal Reddy and Delhi chief minister Sheila Dikshit flagged of the Metro from Akshardham station. On her part, UP chief minister Mayawati flagged off the train from Noida Sec 32.
Residents of Noida, Mayur Vihar, and nearby areas can, from Friday onwards, board a Metro train from their places to large parts of Delhi on the much-awaited Metrocorridor that connects the national capital with the satellite city.
This will be the first time a Metro train officially entered the National Capital Region. The section will be opened for the general public from 6 am on November 13.
The inauguration of the Yamuna Bank-Noida Sector 32 line was delayed as the overcautious DMRC was strengthening around 8 piers on the line. DMRC decided to strengthen the piers after hairline cracks were found on them.
The DMRC had last month said it is planning to open the section before the India International Trade Fair begins on November 14 to enable people from Noida to visit the trade fair through Metro
The line will bring a paradigm shift in the travelling habits of thousands of people in trans-Yamuna areas, Mayur Vihar, Ashok Nagar and Noida. This is also expected to reduce traffic on the Noida Highway as well as on the ITO junction. DMRC has projected that about 53,000 passengers per day are expected to join the new age transport system after the opening of the Noida corridor.
The ceremonial launch from Delhi end took place at the Akshardham station in east Delhi. New Bombardier Metro coaches with caricatures of different sports disciplines of Commonwealth Games chugged out from Akshardham towards Noida, as the VIPs waved the green flags.
The line will have new broadguage trains, procured from Bombardier, and the DMRC is planning to introduce more trains to tackle rush on the section.
The Yamuna Bank-Noida City Centre Metro corridor is completely elevated and has 10 stations and will be integrated with the existing 34.3 km Yamuna Bank-Dwarka Sector-9 segment, extending the total length of Line-3 to 47.4 km. Metro stations on the Noida corridor will have a completely new and modern look.
The exterior of the station will be made using a special technique called ACP (Aluminium Composite Panel). The technique is mostly used in the exterior portion of malls and other modern buildings to provide an aesthetic and modern look.
Parking facility is available at the Akshardham, Botanical Garden and Noida City Centre Metro stations.
The Akshardham Station on the section will be one of the most aesthetic Metro stations so far as it has been designed to match the look of the Akshardham Temple located nearby.
Uttar Pradesh State Road Transport Corporation (UPSRTC) has decided to operate 78 Metro feeder buses. The bus service will be launched on Friday when Metro trains will start operating on the Dwarka-Noida line.
According to Sandeep Raijada, assistant regional manager, Noida Depot, initially, the buses running on the city routes will double up as feeder buses. "We have asked the DMRC to provide us with the schedule for the trains. We will fix the timings of the buses according to the train schedule. For the time being, we plan to run the buses at a frequency of 15 minutes,'' he said.
The fare structure is yet to be decided. "Since, it will be the same city routes that will touch these stations, the fare structures prevalent within the city may remain same,'' added another official.
UPSRTC authorities are also planning to run special link buses connecting Greater Noida and Ghaziabad with the Metro stations. "We plan to operate buses from DSC Marg and Pari Chowk and the old bus terminus at Ghaziabad to Sector 32 (Noida City Centre station) and Sector 15 Metro station. Since Metro trains will ply till late in the night, we plan to provide feeder bus services till midnight,'' added the official.
"It's a return gift." This is what Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit said in a lighter vein when asked how the Metro connectivity to Noida can be a "gift" to the people when the fares have been increased.
Dikshit also justified the recent hike in DTC buses and Metro fares.
"It is the first time Delhi Metro is entering another state and it is a great honour for DMRC," an elated Dikshit said as Urban Development Minister S Jaipal Reddy flagged off the first train.
The Delhi Metro yesterday announced a hike in its fare. The minimum rose from Rs six to Rs eight while the maximum will be Rs 30 instead of Rs 22.
The revised fare will come into effect tomorrow.
Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Mayawati said her government was trying to extend its connectivity to other areas of the National Capital Region in UP.
After flagging off the first train from the Noida City Centre (Sector-32) station, Mayawati hoped that Greater Noida and Jevar, where the state government has proposed an airport, will be connected with Metro soon. "With the Metro train facility, Noida has been added to the most advanced cities in the country.
We would also like to connect the proposed airport in Javer with Metro," Mayawati told the media after the flagging off.
She appealed to the Centre to give its nod to the construction of Javer airport in the Greater Noida area and added that if the Metro reached the area, then the government can go ahead with developing Special Economic zones.
Mayawati said the UP government gave Rs 557 crore to the DMRC as its share for the ambitious project.