Metro East-West corridor likely to open only in April
The longest stretch of metro rail line from Nayandahalli, Mysuru Road and Baiyappanahalli would be open for commuters by April and not March, going by the works still under way at the underground stretches.
The stretch is 18-km long. Deadlines have been moving from month to month. First it was January, then February, March and now April. The tests are under way, and once completed, Namma Metro will seek safety clearance from the Commissioner of Railway Safety (CRS).
Currently, signalling and communication tests are under way on the underground stretch that connects Chinnaswamy stadium on Reach 1 with Magadi Road metro station on Reach 2. These tests, which would normally require shutting down of the entire stretch, are being held in the night because both reaches, except for the underground section, are open for commercial operations. “We are on track to finish the work by March. We need to do signal testing for 15-20 days more since we are able to do it only at night. Some oscillation tests too are under way. Once completed, we will be able to apply to the CRS for commercial operations clearance,” said BMRCL spokesperson U A Vasanth Rao.
Oscillation, in general, is a periodic fluctuation between two things and oscillation in a device called an oscillator is usually a back-and-forth motion over a central neutral point created by changes in energy. In the railways tests, oscillation is undertaken to check for stability and the ability of the train to stand up to swinging motions. Meanwhile, work is also on at stations which fall on this route. Architectural work is on at all these stations apart from work at the entry and exit points at the ground level. Escalators are being fixed at the stations that require the same. Final work on the false ceilings is also on.
It is expected that most of the work on the stations will be completed by March-end. Slated for inauguration in 2013, the construction of underground stations started in 2011 and took four years to complete because of rocky underground terrain which delayed work on the stretch. While the underground section will be made available for Reach 1 and 2 by the end of April, the stretch between North and South, Reach 3, 3A and 3B and Reach 4, Sampige Road and Jayanagar will be made accessible much later. The East-West corridor in all will be opened by April, while the entire phase 1 will be thrown open to the public in December this year.
Work at underground stations
Cubbon Park station: Restored road above is opened to traffic. Escalators installed from ground to concourse and concourse to platform level.
Vidhana Soudha Station: Final works in progress. Escalators have been installed till ground level.
Sir M Visvesvaraya Station (Central College): All escalators from concourse to platform and ground to concourse have been installed. Tunnel ventilation, cooling tower and chiller plant have been installed.
Bangalore City Station: Final finishing works of false ceiling and painting works are being carried out. Escalators have been installed.