2 new metro rail routes in the offing

Hasibul Aman

6 July, 2019 12:00 AM printer

The government is seriously mulling over construction of two new metro rails in the capital to give city dwellers a big sigh of relief from Dhaka’s nagging traffic congestion.

The new routes will be metro rail line 1 and 5, most part of which will be underground and connect the airport with Kamalapur and Hemayetpur with Vatara.

Road transport and highways division has already sent two development project proforma (DPP) to the planning commission for approval, sources familiar with the matter said.

Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) is providing financial and technical assistance to the schemes.

The cost of the two new metro rails has been primarily estimated at Tk 93,161 crore of which JICA will provide Tk 63,850 crore as loans while the rest of Tk 29,311 crore will come from the state coffer.

Currently, work is going on for 20km elevated metro rail line-6 from Uttara to Motijheel in two phases with Japan’s financial and technical assistance.

According to the project document, the length of metro rail line-1 will be 31.24km from Airport to Kamalapur of which 19km will go underground and the rest will be elevated track.

On the other hand, 14km of 20km metro rail line-5 from Hemayetpur to Vatara will be underground rail line and the rest will be elevated.

Planning commission high-ups said they have already held a project evaluation committee (PEC) meeting on the proposals. Some changes have been brought to the projects after PEC suggested for it.

The projects may be recommended for Ecnec meeting for final approval by Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina by next month, they informed.

The cost of line-1 has been estimated at Tk 51,600 crore where Japan will extend Tk 33,094 crore loan support and the government will bear Tk 17,986 crore.

Its completion deadline has been set at 2027. It will be able to carry 14 lakh people every day which will be later increased to 19 lakh.

The construction of metro rail line-5 will cost the government Tk 41,261 crore where Japan is expected to provide Tk 30,756 crore loan.

Its completion deadline has primarily been set at 2028.

In the first phase, 16.4km metro rail line-1 will be constructed from Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport to Kamalapur, and in the next phase, a route will be constructed from Kuril to Purbachal via Bashundhara.

The project will have a total of 21 stations and an interchange with the line-5 Notun Bazar-Baridhara station.

The MRT line-5 will be the second underground rail line with two routes—one in the north and another in the south.

The 20km north section will run from Hemayetpur-Gabtali-Mirpur-Banani-Gulshan to Notun Bazar and Vatara.

The south segment’s length will be 15km and it will have eight underground stations at Gabtali-Adabar-Mohammadpur-Kalabagan-Karwanbazar-Hatirjheel-South Badda and Aftab Nagar.