THE CITY AND YOU BMRCL says work on the 9.9-km stretch to be completed in June-July

Your dream journey — coasting above the traffic from Peenya to Swastik in Malleswaram (Sampige Road Metro Station) — is unlikely to be fulfilled till this year-end as the Bangalore Metro Rail Corporation Ltd. (BMRCL) will be able to complete the construction only by June-July this year.

This, in turn, will affect the inauguration of the next phase of commercial operations as BMRCL will have to embark on an elaborate process of conducting trial tests on the 9.9-km track before getting final clearance from the Commissioner of Metro Rail Safety (CMRS). BMRCL had been keen on throwing open the stretch to traffic by December 2012 and then in June 2013.

Litigation, delay

However, work got delayed because of litigation over land meant for the Sandal Soap Factory metro station and delay on the part of South Western Railway in giving clearance for the viaduct passing over Bangalore-Tumkur Railway line near Sriramapuram. The stretch, Reach 3 and 3A, comprises 11 stations.

BMRCL Managing Director N. Sivasailam told reporters here on Monday that all the works related to the viaduct, right from civil to electrical and signalling, are likely to be completed by July this year. Then trial tests have to commence and the track has to be certified for public carriage after final oscillation trials.

To whether the certification process could be speeded up since BMRCL has taken up similar exercise on Reach 1 between Byappanahalli and Mahatma Gandhi Road, he said: “I cannot comment on that. That’s their [CMRS’s] business.” Test trials and oscillation trials on Reach 1 had taken about three months before certification. If the same yardstick is applied for Reaches 3 and 3A, the commissioning could take place in October-November.

Breakthrough

Krishna, the first tunnel boring machine (TBM) in the North-South Corridor of Namma Metro Phase 1 achieved the breakthrough at the City Market underground metro station site on Monday morning.

A BMRCL communiqué said that the TBM had started burrowing from Prof. P. Shivashankar Circle (near KIMS Hospital) four months ago. It completed the 393 m of tunnelling before reaching the City Market underground station site in front of Vani Vilas and Victoria Hospitals.

Unlike the slurry-based TBMs Helen and Margarita, which are burrowing tunnels on the East-West Corridor, Krishna is an earth-pressure balance (EPB) TBM with a ‘mixed shield’, tailor-made by Herrenknecht of Germany.

The machine was assembled in and imported from China.

While slurry is used to maintain pressure within the machine in slurry-based TBMs, extracts [from tunnelling] are used to maintain pressure in EPB TBMs.

BMRCL said that the machine has performed successfully so far in the complex underground geological conditions in the alignment.

Mr. Sivasailam said that another TBM, Cauvery, will be reaching City Market underground station in a fortnight from Prof. P. Shivashankar Circle. Both Krishna and Cauvery will have to be moved to the other end of the station site to commence burrowing towards Chickpet station, he said.

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