Bangalore Suburban Rail Network-Will the People’s Wish Be Granted?

Bangalore Suburban Rail Network-Will the People’s Wish Be Granted?

By : Thinley Wangmo  Date : Jan 12, 2018

There is great news for everybody in Bangalore who is unhappy with the traffic situation. The Finance Minister, Arun Jaitley has given a green signal for 160Km Sub-Urban Railway Network for Bangalore in the Union Budget 2018. This rail network is a total of Rs. 17,000 crore project which is expected to cater the demands of the growing population in Bangalore.

Why Is Sub Urban Train Necessary In Bangalore?

Traffic congestion is a hot topic of discussion in every office cafeteria and boardroom in Bangalore. Every person travelling in Bangalore is aware that the situation is getting worse year by year. According to the data shared by Ola, cabs in Bangalore moved at an average speed of 20.4 km per hour in 2016, but it fell to 17.2 km per hour in 2017 which is the slowest among the major Indian cities. The “Silk Board Junction” is now considered the most brutal congested area in the country with the lowest speed at 4.48 km per hour during peak hours. Similarly, the speed is just 4-5 km per hour on the Outer Ring Road in peak hours.

There are many factors affecting the traffic problem. The population in Bangalore has increased from 8.7 million in 2011 to 12.34 million in 2017 which have led to increased number of vehicles on the road. For instance, the numbers of two-wheelers have drastically increased from 40Lakhs in 2016 to 50Lakhs in 2017. Although the operations of cab service providers such as Ola, Uber and Meru Cabs have made it convenient to travel, this has led to increased gridlocks.  In addition to the existing unplanned road system, Bangalore road witnesses in-efficient drivers, lane cuttings, jaywalking and randomly parked vehicles.

Bangalore Continues To Prosper, But For How Long?

Criticizing the growing population will not bring any solution as the city requires skilled manpower to further flourish the IT capital of the nation. In Bangalore, there are new apartments, education institutions, IT and Business Parks coming up frequently. With over one million people already working in the IT sector, this number is bound to rise with more upcoming DEVELOPMENTS. Just the announcement in 2017 from Apple setting up their iOS App Design and Development Accelerator in Bangalore has generated interest from IT professionals around the nation and beyond. Therefore, Bangalore continues to grow but needs a quick plan of action to sustain this growth.

Economists estimate the traffic delays cost $21.3 billion annually in India and around $950 million in Bangalore. This cost is on account of productivity loss, air pollution, road accidents and fuel wastage. An average citizen spends more than 240 hours stuck in traffic congestions every year. So, the revenue and efficiency lost due to traffic is alarming and can hamper the growth of the city if not addressed with systematic actions soon.

Bangalore Requires Up-Gradation of the Existing Infrastructure with Timely and Well-Planned Implementation of the Suburban Rail Network!

The traffic problem can be solved and the answers are straightforward-Strict Government Intervention through Regulations and Policy Implementation for Sustainable Public Transportation. Karnataka State has a lot to learn from Mumbai suburban railway networks. The Suburban Railway Network can be the solution to the insufficient BMTC services and lagging Metro constructions if executed properly.

The Suburban Rail is for those people who travel on a daily basis within a city. The Bangalore Sub Urban rail will be 160 Km network with a capacity to carry 1,800 to 2,000 passengers per trip. It is a joint venture between the Karnataka State Government and Indian Railways sharing the project cost at 50:50 ratio with an estimated cost of around Rs.17,000 crore in total. However, the railway minister Piyush Goyal has agreed to fund half of the project cost with a condition that the state government has to permit five times the Floor Area Ratio (FAR) for the railway land.

So, Which Areas Are Going To Benefit?

                            Railway Pink Book Promises (Highlights)

 Sanctioned Costs                                                                                            Purpose    
Rs.169.65 crore

Doubling of Yeswanthpur to Channasandra with 21.7 Km

Rs.375.67 crore

Doubling of Baiyappanahalli to Hosur with 48 Km

Rs.45.24 crore                 3rd coaching division terminal at Baiyappanahalli in Bangalore Division                                                 
Rs.4.4 crore

Automatic signalling Bangalore Cantonment to Whitefield

Rs.15.19 crore

Manufacturing supply and commissioning of prefabricated all weather covered shed for pit line 1-4 in Yeswanthpur

                                                                  Credit: The Economic Times

 

The announcement of the upcoming Suburban Rail has given a breath of fresh air to this city. This will address the problem of traffic congestion and improve the productivity and infrastructure of the city. The Phase 1 suburban railway network will hopefully connect the Yeshwanthpur/ Yelahanka to Anekal/Hosur which will immensely decongest the city along with lesser emissions on the road.  The large segment of IT Park concentrated locations such as Marathahalli, Whitefield, Indiranagar, Electronic City, Sarjapur and the infamous Silk Board and Tin Factory junctions are likely to have a sign of relief from all the traffic chaos. Furthermore, the suburban railway network will certainly boost the real estate market in Bangalore.


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