Bengaluru has finally taken “a small step, but a giant leap” to put an end to its traffic woes.
Chief Minister Siddaramaiah and Union Urban Development Minister M Venkaiah Naidu on Friday inaugurated the underground stretch between Cubbon Park and City Railway Station on Namma Metro’s East-West corridor.
Flagging off Underground Section from M.G. Road Station to City Railway Station of Bangalore Metro Phase-I pic.twitter.com/bGiJQGbrQ0— M Venkaiah Naidu (@MVenkaiahNaidu) April 29, 2016
The 18.10 km stretch of the Purple Line from Baiyappanahalli to Mysuru Road via Majestic was thrown open for commuters on Saturday, with the first train leaving at 6 am and the last train scheduled to leave at 10 pm.
Happy with the underground metro’s inauguration, this is how Twitterati reacted :
From today, Bypanahalli to Mysore Road covering 25 KM in 35 minutes flat @ Rs. 40 ! Thank you Bangalore Metro !!— Karthick V (@csvkart) April 30, 2016
Bangalore metro opens its underground section. Hope the bus conductors now have enough free time to give back our change.— karthik srinivasa (@kar_srin) April 29, 2016
Completely AGree.Experienced Bangalore traffic for 5 days which is worst than Delhi.Bangalore metro will ease some https://t.co/bgAna6fjkT— Akhil (@akhilgwl) April 30, 2016
#Happynews for Bangalore peeps ,From today, Bypanahalli to Mysore Road covering 25 KM in 35 minutes..Thank you Bangalore Metro !!— Ragini (@SooryavanshiR28) April 30, 2016
Project delayed by four years
The complete stretch has around 17 stations with 6 underground stations covering a distance of 4.8 km. Underground work on the first phase commenced in May 2011.
The project was already delayed by four years and the initial budget sanctioned for the 42.5 km stretch, including phase-1 and phase-2 was Rs 8,158 crore. But due to obstacles emerging from underground work, an additional cost of nearly Rs 5,000 crore came up, reported Business Standard.
Now with the inauguration of the first phase, BMRCL Managing Director Pradeep Singh Kharola was quoted telling CNN-News18, “Our target is to make travel easier. We expect a rider-ship of 50,000 people”.
The underground metro runs through some high-profile areas like the Vidhan Soudha and some major tourist spots of the city.