The interchange station at Majestic will not be ready by December 2013

Even if Bangalore Metro Rail Corporation Ltd. (BMRCL) keeps its promise of completing the East-West and North-South Corridors of Namma Metro Phase I by December 2013 and commissions them, commuters will not be able to switch between the corridors for at least next six months. Why? Because the only interchange station in Phase I — Majestic — won't be ready.

As the contract has just been awarded in December for this two-level underground station where the East-West (Byappanahalli-Mysore Road Terminal) and North-South (Hessarghatta Cross-Puttenahalli Cross) lines cross, BMRCL, at last week's cabinet meeting, sought six more months to complete the work.

The work for this station was awarded to Coastal-GYT Joint Venture at a cost of Rs. 272 crore. The contractor has just commenced the work by barricading the project site at the Kempegowda Bus Station. To expedite the work, BMRCL has reportedly dangled incentives before the contractor for beating the 36-month schedule.

There has been almost two-year delay in awarding the contract for underground works, including the stations, ever since BMRCL decided to split the works into three packages in December 2009.

While the BMRCL had estimated the entire underground works to cost about Rs. 2,600 crore, the lowest bid received for the package was about Rs. 3,000 crore, forcing it to split — and consequently delay — the work.

The mandate to the contractor is only to complete the civil works and does not involve providing any other facility, including laying of tracks, providing signalling and telecommunication, power, air-conditioning, ventilation, escalators and so on.

To execute all these works, BMRCL has floated a different tender.

Keywords: Metro RailBMRCL