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Project Update

Chennai Metro, Tamil Nadu, India [free access]

February 1, 2021

Developer/Operator: Chennai Metro Rail Limited (CMRL) is the developer and operator of the metro system. It is a joint venture (JV) with equal equity share of the Government of India and the state government of Tamil Nadu.

 

Project description: Expansion of the metrorail system in Chennai, the capital city of the Indian state of Tamil Nadu.

 

Background: Currently, Phase I is fully operational. It comprises two lines (Line 1 and Line 2), which together span 45 km and cover 31 stations.

 

 

Rolling stock and technology: Alstom has supplied 42 four-car train sets under a USD272.96 million contract secured in August 2010. The trains are air-conditioned, feature regenerative braking, operate at a maximum speed of 80 km/hr, and have a capacity of 1,276 passengers (seated and standing).

 

Tracks are standard gauge (1,435 mm). Power is sourced from overhead catenary (25 kV).

 

Germany-based Siemens has supplied the power supply system, the signalling system, and the platform screen doors.

 

Fare system: Contactless smartcards, quick-response (QR)-code tickets, tourist cards, trip cards, and bank cards are used as fare media. Nippon Signal Company Limited has supplied the automatic fare collection (AFC) system.

 

Ridership: The average daily ridership was 81,500 for the financial year (FY) 2018–19. The total ridership for December 2020 was 1.23 million. By 2026, the average daily ridership is expected to be 522,000 passengers on Line 1 and 542,000 passengers on Line 2.

 

Extensions/Capital Projects: 

 

Phase I Extension: In December 2020, trial operations were successfully completed for the extension project from Washermenpet to Wimco Nagar, spanning 9.05 km and covering eight stations (two underground, six elevated). Passenger operations are expected to commence by end-February 2021. France-based Systra Consulting provided consultancy services for Phase I extension, under an INR280 million contract.

 

Phase II: It will comprise three lines or corridors which will together span 119 km and cover 128 stations. The majority of the stretch is expected to be underground. Phase II is expected to be completed by 2026.

 

 

 

 

Funding: Phase II is estimated to cost over INR618.43 billion and will be financed by the Government of India, the state government of Tamil Nadu, the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), the Asian Development Bank (ADB), AIIB, and the New Development Bank (NDB).

 

In February 2020, the government of Tamil Nadu allocated INR31 billion as share capital assistance, subordinate debt, and pass-through loan assistance for the expansion of Chennai Metro. Earlier, in February 2018, CMRL had announced plans to invest INR40 billion to begin work on Phase II.

 

Key contracts awarded for Phase II: In September 2018, a consortium of Systra and Consulting Engineers Group (CEG) and AECOM was appointed as the design consultants of the Madhavaram to Chennai Mofussil Bus Terminus (CMBT) and the Madhavaram to Shollinganallur (via Purasawalkam and Mylapore) corridor of Phase II. 

 

Also in September 2018, the CEG–AECOM consortium secured contracts to provide design consultancy services for other Phase II corridors, including the Madhavaram Milk Colony to Thousand Lights corridor, the Thousand Lights to Taramani Road Junction corridor, and the Nehru Nagar to Shollinganallur corridor.

 

Rolling stock: In June 2020, CMRL announced plans to lease 42 three-car trains (126 railcars) and to procure 96 three-car trains (288 railcars) for Phase II by 2025. These 414 railcars will be procured via an international competitive bidding process. All these trains will be operated with 25 KV power supply.

 

-        Of these, 70 three-car trains (210 railcars) will be deployed on the priority section of Corridor 3 and on a section of Corridor 5. The procurement of these trains will also be financed by a loan from the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA).

-        Another 26 three-car trains (78 railcars) will be deployed on Corridor 4.

-        The remaining 42 three-car trains (126 railcars) will be deployed on the remaining sections of Corridors 3 and 5 and are planned to be leased.

 

Merger of metro and commuter rail: Southern Railways (SR), a subsidiary of Indian Railways and CMRL, has announced plans to merge the SR-owned Chennai Mass Rapid Transit System (MRTS) with Chennai Metro.

 

Currently, the MRTS comprises one line which spans over 19 km and covers 18 stations. The fare structure of Chennai Metro is expected to be adopted for the combined system. 

 

The following upgrades are planned for the MRTS:

 

 

Fare system upgrade: In August 2017, CMRL announced plans to launch a universal smartcard for all public transport modes, parking, and other value-added services. CMRL has associated with 32 agencies to ensure the use of the universal smartcard for payment purposes.

 

There are plans to launch near-field communication (NFC)-based mobile ticketing and to integrate the fare system of the metro with that of the bus system. In April 2019, CMRL invited bids to supply quick- response (QR)-code-based mobile and paper tickets and to install a near-field communication (NFC)-based open-loop payments system as well as maintain the existing automatic fare collection (AFC) system of Chennai Metro. Ford Mobility won the bid and it will integrate the QR and open-loop system with the existing closed loop system by May 2021.

 

Recent developments:

 

o   CMRL invited bids to construct five underground stations, two cross passage shafts, and an emergency escape shaft. The works are a part of Corridor 3 of Phase II. The duration of the contract is five years (1,725 days). The last date for the submission of bids is March 8, 2021.

o   CMRL invited bids to construct five underground stations, twin bored tunnels, and ramps with U-section. The last date for the submission of bids is May 7, 2021.

o   CMRL invited bids to construct a 10-km elevated stretch from Sholinganallur to SIPCOT in Siruseri along the IT Expressway (OMR), and nine metro stations. ADB will provide the funding for the contract. The duration of the contract is three years. The last date for the submission of bids is May 5, 2021.

o   CMRL invited bids to construct the 12.43-km elevated stretch between CMBT metro station and Puzhuthivakkam metro station, including construction of 12 stations and all associated works of Corridor 5 of Phase II. ADB may provide the funding for the contract. The duration of the contract is 36 months. The last date for the submission of bids is May 27, 2021.

o   Bids were invited to supply, design, test, and commission standard gauge rolling stock. The scope of work also includes provision of personnel training. The last date for the submission of bids is March 24, 2021.

o   CMRL invited bids for the construction of an elevated viaduct of a 12-km section of Phase II Corridor 5. The last date for the submission of bids is June 27, 2021.

o   Bids were invited for the construction of a depot at Poonamallee. The scope of works also includes execution of structural works, architectural finishes, plumbing works, signages, utility shifting,  boundary wall, and all associated works for Phase II. The last date for the submission of bids is April 12, 2021.

o   Bids were invited for the construction of four underground stations, the diaphragm wall for two underground stations, and a high road-cum-crossover box. The last date for the submission of bids is March 8, 2021.

o   Bids were invited for the construction of three underground stations and works other than the diaphragm wall of one underground station. The last date for the submission of bids is March 8, 2021.

 

 (1 INR [Indian Rupee] = 0.01 USD)