Mumbai transport body, London counterpart ink MoU

A memorandum of understanding was signed on Monday between the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority, and Transport for London, which is a government body responsible for transport in Greater London.

A press statement issued by the office of the Chief Minister said that the tie-up between the two government bodies would facilitate exchange of information and technology transfer in the transportation sector. It will help MMRDA to implement its plans of a 150-km long metro network in the Mumbai metropolitan region.

The MoU was signed by Rahul Asthana, Metropolitan Commissioner, MMRDA, and David Waboso, Director, Capital Programmes for Transport for London (TfL). The MoU was signed in the backdrop of the UK Prime Minister David Cameron’s visit to Mumbai.

Maharashtra Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan said that the UK business community’s participation in the mega infrastructure initiatives in the Mumbai Metropolitan Region would encourage the State Government to plan similar initiatives in the future.

After 46 years, rail bus to chug up to Matheran again

The rail bus, which had been phased out around 46 years, will soon run on the tracks up to Matheran on the mini rails. Though the 80-year-old vintage rail bus cannot be revived due to lack of spare parts, following a request from the state government, the Central Railway (CR) has decided to run new rail buses. Recently, a tender was floated for three rail buses.
“Around a year ago, MMRDA officials asked Railways to run the rail buses between Dasturi Naka and Matheran station as beyond Dasturi naka there is no means of transport up to Matheran except the toy train. MMRDA deposited Rs 5 crore with Railways for the rail buses,” said a senior official.

Apart from tourists, it will also be beneficial for villagers living beyond Dasturi naka and people who come by road and have to walk up to Matheran — which is 3 km away— or use horses, cycles or hand-pulled rickshaws as no vehicle is permitted beyond Dasturi naka.

As soon as MMRDA deposited the money, the Railways called for bidders. There were two bidders for the tender, but a Patna-based company Phooltas, which provided rail buses for meter gauge sections in Railways, is the frontrunner. This will be first rail bus for narrow gauge for the company and each rail bus will cost Rs 1.30 crore.

“The rail buses can also be attached to couplers. Though they will look like ordinary buses, they will have driving cabs on both ends, separated by a glass panel door. This diesel bus will be able to ferry around 12 passengers at a time at the speed of 20 kmph,’’ the official added.

Published in: on January 14, 2012 at 4:53 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Metro rail tracks to have anti-noise technology

The ambitious Metro rail project of Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) will not only be one of the most efficient Mass Rapid Transport Systems (MRTS) in the city but is also expected to scale high on environmental efficiency.

As MMRDA has kept high priority for environment-friendly technology’s adoption in development of Metro rail, the development authority is confident of achieving the same through installations of elastomeric pads which controls the noise levels of running train.

According to Joint Project Director (PR), Dilip Kawathkar, there were many challenges in Metro rail project in Mumbai. “Mumbai is the city with population density of about 30,000 people per square kilometer. The total length of Metro rail will be more than 145km. There are many schools, colleges and hospitals in vicinity of the project and in future more such institutions might come up alongside the project. We had to emphasize on the technology which would provide excellent services to the commuters along with least possible disturbances to the people of Mumbai.”

Kawathakar said that this issue was taken in due consideration while incepting the project and hence, had approved of the technology of elastomeric pads. Under this technology, the elastomeric pads are installed between concrete structures and tracks. This helps in reducing vibrations and noise. This technology is used globally in many industries including railway tracks, railway bridges, constructions etc.

Single ticketing for Metro, monorail

The state government has decided to implement the single ticket system on Metro and monorail. In 2007 the then Railway Minister mooted a GO Mumbai Card, with an integrated ticketing system, for travel on trains (Western Railway and Central Railway) and BEST buses. It took three years for the system to be implemented as the state government faced technical hurdles in implementation due to involvement of multiple agencies.

At present the Western Railway, Central Railway, Brihanmumbai Electric Supply and Transport (BEST) operate the transport system in the city. “There are multiple agencies involved in the integration of system and having a single ticketing system. Since the MMRDA is the nodal agency for the Metro and Monorail it has been decided to have the single ticketing system in this transport project. It is easier to add a clause in the agreement to have such a system which can be also extended to other routes,” said Mumbai Transformation Support Unit project manager UPS Madan.

Sources said the MMRDA is also planning to hire consultants who had done a similar integration in Singapore .

“After Metro and monorail the next system to be integrated would the BEST. As the agency is controlled by the state government, unlike railways, the work would be easier and faster. The integration of railways would be done after BEST,” Madan added.–monorail/639283/