The Delhi Metro Rail Corporation's Phase III expansions plans are sure to please many more residents of the city. First it was the ‘heritage corridor' for heritage enthusiasts, now plans to connect four of South Delhi's prominent markets will surely prove a boon for shopaholics.
By 2016, four major markets — Sarojini Nagar, INA, South Extension and Lajpat Nagar — will have dedicated underground metro stations connecting them. This chain of four consecutive metro stations will come up on the arterial Ring Road and it is estimated that two lakh more passengers will use these stations primarily to reach these markets that specialise in selling clothes, shoes and other accessories.
After construction of this new line — Mukundpur to Yamuna Vihar — shoppers will be able to reach places such as Dilli Haat and Ansal Plaza from far flung areas of East and North Delhi. The expected ridership in 2016 will be 15,000 in Sarojini Nagar, over 1,29,000 in INA, over 8,000 at South Extension and over 54,000 at Lajpat Nagar.
Of these, the stations at INA and Lajpat Nagar will also be converted into interchange stations to further boost connectivity to these commercial hubs. With inter-station distances ranging from less than a kilometre to about one and a half kilometre, the Delhi Metro claims it will also provide a great impetus to business improvements in the area.
Since shoppers at Sarojini Nagar and South Extension markets have had to rely on buses and auto-rickshaws to get to their destinations, the metro stations that will come up very close to the markets (within 50 metres) will make the transportation easier. Though these locations are well connected by buses, parking of private vehicles has always proved to be a major constraint for shoppers.
The shopping hubs will now be directly accessible from areas such as Mayur Vihar, Trilokpuri (East Delhi), Ashram, Sriniwaspuri (South Delhi), Azadpur, Shalimar Bagh, Netaji Subhash Place (North Delhi), Punjabi Bagh, Rajouri Garden, Mayapuri (West Delhi). From Gurgaon also shoppers will be able to reach just by changing at INA, from Faridabad the commuters will be able to come directly to Lajpat Nagar and from Ghaziabad and Noida, shoppers will be able to reach Lajpat Nagar just by changing trains at Kalkaji Mandir.