The Weekend Leader - Metro rail for 500 cities with 1 lakh-plus people on anvil

Metro rail for 500 cities with 1 lakh-plus people on anvil

New Delhi

10-October-2014

The government is preparing a comprehensive mobility plan focusing on public rapid transit systems for 500 cities, each with population of more than 100,000, a top official of the urban development ministry said Friday.

"As a part of these schemes, government would provide finance up to 50 percent for preparing the detailed project report," Urban Development Secretary Shankar Agarwal said, addressing an industry chamber CII-organised meet here on urban transportation.

"One of the key focus areas (of the comprehensive mobility plans) would be setting up of the Mass Rapid Transit System (MRTS) across cities," he added.

Giving out the figures, Chittaranjan Kumar Khetan, joint secretary in the ministry, said while 231 km of Metro rail are already under operation, 511 km are under construction and 529 km under consideration of the government, including 331 km of Regional Rapid Transit Systems (RRTS) for increasing mobility between Delhi NCR and surrounding areas.

Further, 15,485 buses have been sanctioned for 61 mission cities with an estimated cost of Rs.4,724 crore, he added.

Delivering the valedictory address at the 11th Metropolis World Congress in Hyderabad Thursday, President Pranab Mukherjee had said the government is designing a new urban development programme to take up activities in mission-mode for 500 cities, where private sector participation will be encouraged.

The new Urban Development Mission would support states by hand-holding them in building infrastructure and services in step with the rapid pace of urbanization, Mukherjee said. - IANS