The Airports Authority of India (AAI) has granted land for the construction of the long-stuck New Garia-Airport Metro project. The Authority has offered land parcels from the eastern periphery of the Airport parked for the development of the proposed flyover on VIP Road.
With this move, the Rail Vikash Nigam Limited (RVNL), the executing agency of the metro projects in Kolkata, will soon start the construction work.
To facilitate construction of the flyover, the West Bengal government had asked the RNVL for an underground metro route from City Centre II. The distance between City Centre II and the site of the proposed airport station is around 4.9 km. As per the original plan, the Metro viaduct was to be stretched up to 500 m along an elevated corridor on VIP Road. However, the State government concluded that parting with two of the six lanes of VIP Road was not possible. The proposed flyover will connect VIP Road with Jessore Road through an elevated corridor from Gate 1 on VIP Road with Gate 3 on Jessore Road.
The project further became uncertain due to the Railway Board disagreeing to change as the cost of an underground route is nearly 2.8 times costlier than an elevated corridor. The cost of developing an elevated track is Rs 150 crore for every km. On the flip side, Rs 350 crore per km will be spent for developing the underground route. Considering this, the State government and Metro Rail Corporation will be sharing the value of the land at 1:1 ratio.