Bengaluru: The Karnataka state cabinet had recently approved a change in the metro route that connects East Bengaluru with the city’s airport at an additional cost.
It has now come to light that Namma Metro’s revised route to reach the Kempegowda International Airport (KIA) will make access difficult for commuters from some areas of the city, even as the cost for the project has seen a 44.25 per cent jump to accommodate the changes.
Namma Metro’s airport corridor was earlier designed to be from Gottigere to Kempegowda International Airport via Nagawara. However, the route hass been revised to include K.R. Puram-Nagawara-Airport along the entire 38-km stretch now.
There was also speculation that the new alignment to reach KIA will be longer compared to the Nagawara-KIA (29 km) and thus take longer time to reach the airport.
The estimated time taken from K.R. Puram to reach KIA on the Metro will be around 45 minutes. The earlier Nagawara-KIA route would have taken a travel time of just 25 minutes. The new alignment will touch Nagawara, but will take the Hebbal and Kogilu Cross route that will be 9 km longer than the earlier alignment via RK Hegde Nagar and Yelahanka.
BMRCL has, however, clarified to Deccan Chronicle that the journey and time taken to reach KIAL will depend on the train speed. "It’s a rumour that it will take longer time to reach KIAL, but it also depends on the train speed. The new alignment will have fewer stations after Hebbal (6) to reach the airport.
So, along this stretch the train can touch a speed of up to 80 kilometre per hour. So the travel time will match the earlier alignment and commuter can reach the airport early," the official said. According to a BMRCL report, the trains are currently plying at an average speed of 35 kilometre an hour. So BMRCL claims that they are now aiming for a maximum speed of 80 to 85 kmph and an average speed of 60 kmph for airport-bound trains to cut down on travel time.
"The decision was taken due to the presence of a high-pressure petroleum pipe which runs from Bengaluru to Mangaluru on the route proposed earlier.
Also, this new alignment will be very helpful for the future to control traffic" BMRCL official explains. The revised route will have 17 stations, instead of the seven planned on the Nagawara-KIA route.
The stations on the revised route include K.R. Puram, Channasandra, Horamavu, Kalyan Nagar (Babusab Palya), HRBR Layout, HBR Layout, Nagawara, Veera1nna Palya, Kempa-pura Cross, Hebbal, Kodigehalli, Jakkur, Kogilu Cross, Peripheral Ring Road (Bagalur), Trumpet Intersection and two stations at KIA.While KR Puram-KIA will cost an estimated Rs 10,584.1 crore, the earlier planned line from Gottigere-Nagawara-KIA was to be built at a cost of Rs 5,900 crore.