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Route emerges for first hi-speed rail corridor

Rlys mull pvt finance options; tenders may begin in ‘14.
Pune-Mumbai-Ahmedabad would probably be the first rail line in the country to have a high-speed corridor, from the six being planned. The estimated construction cost is Rs 100 crore a km.
Tendering for creation of infrastructure for the corridor is expected to begin in 2014. French consultancy Systra recently gave a pre-feasibility report on the project to Indian Railways (IR). The latter are considering financial options for the entire project.
One is on a design, build, finance, operate and transfer basis, through a single private developer who will be responsible for construction, operations and maintenance.
There will be no interface risk on IR and all revenue risk can be transferred to the private developer. The option is unbundling the project into components. This may make it attractive to more companies from the perspective of affordability, in terms of size and risk allocation.
The estimated cost for the infrastructure might be around Rs 50,000 crore and another Rs 7,000 crore for rolling stock, averaging approximately Rs 100 crore per km.
The estimated traffic projection is around 26.6 million passengers in 2021. This is expected to rise to 104 million passengers in 2041. The likely alignment is expected to include a tunnel of 18.3 km between Lonavala and Karjat. The initially planned alignment of Pune-Mumbai-Ahmedabad is expected to have intermediate stations at Navi Mumbai Airport, Surat and Vadodara, to get more traffic.
These high-speed rail routes are expected to be built as elevated corridors, in keeping with the pattern of habitation and the constraint of land. These tracks will be completely fenced, with no road crossings. IR’s plan to have trains at more than 300 km/hour on the six selected corridors: Delhi-Chandigarh-Amritsar, Pune-Mumbai-Ahmedabad, Howrah-Haldia, Hyderabad-Dornakal-Vijayawada-Chennai, Chennai-Bangalore-Coimbatore-Kochi and Delhi-Agra-Lucknow-Varanasi-Patna.
Source - Business-standard

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