Initially, 10 trains to ply nearly 10-km stretch from Koyambedu to Alandur

In just six months, Metro Rail will be a reality in Chennai: commuters may be able to hop on to a train at Koyambedu and take a ride up to Alandur.

By September the contractors have to complete a substantial amount of work, required to run Metro Rail services, and a month from then, operations will begin.

Though the services are likely to begin, commuters may have to enter and exit stations that will not be entirely complete, officials said.

For instance, instead of four entry/exit points, the stations may initially have only two, an official said. It may take as long as March 2015 for users to travel through fully done stations, he added.

Initially, 10 trains will ply the nearly 10-km stretch from Koyambedu to Alandur at a speed of about 60-65 kmph, though the maximum speed will be 80 kmph, another official said.

The work on stations from Koyambedu to Alandur was left in limbo for over two months after Chennai Metro Rail Limited (CMRL) terminated the contract of Consolidated Construction Consortium Limited (CCCL), citing inordinate delay in completing the construction.

Subsequently, other contractors, including Thiruchitambalam Projects Limited, URC Construction Limited and Nagarjuna Constructions, were awarded contracts for the work on these stations, according to officials.

For ten stations, including Koyambedu, CMBT, Vadapalani, Ashok Nagar, Ekkatuthangal, Alandur, Guindy and OTA, CMRL has awarded tenders worth about Rs. 250 crore, said an official.

Though CMRL planned to do the trial run by December 2013 and commence operations by March 2014, the run was conducted only late January this year.