Metro Rail Project Hit by Low Population and Lack of Financial Viability
23 May, 2013

Lack of financial viability and low population can prove to be hurdles in the Metro Rail project proposal. With the project required to pass through several stages, including clearance from the Finance Ministry and Planning Commission, it is still a long drawn process till the project gets a green signal.

As per the Detailed Project Report that has been prepared for the project by Delhi Metro Rail Corporation, the construction was to commence in 2013 and the first phase of the project was to be operational by 2018. The issues of financial viability and population of the city were raised at a meeting with the Ministry of Urban Development that was held in New Delhi on May 21. The total cost of the project is Rs 10,900 crore.

A substantial part of the Metro in Chandigarh that falls in the sectoral grid where it would be constructed underground will add to the cost. Construction of the underground Metro is three times that of elevated Metro. It was pointed out that the financial viability of the project was low. While the cost incurred to set up the project is high, the expected returns are not at par. Another hindrance is that the population in the Tricity is not very high. Chandigarh being landlocked, there is a limit to future expansion. Officials state that cities that are more congested than Chandigarh do not have Metro Rail.

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