The much-awaited Chennai Mono Rail project is likely to witness some progress in a month when there will be clarity as to which firms have qualified for the second and final stages of the tendering process.

As of now, documents on qualifications (known as request for qualifications) from three groups of firms are before the authorities. The prospective promoters will have to provide some more documents and will have time till the end of this month, say sources.

Only after clearing the present stage, proposals (request for proposals) from prospective promoters will be sought.

Recently, two experts from Chennai Metro Rail Limited have been included in the committee that scrutinises bid documents. The tendering process is under way for one corridor — Poonamallee to Kathipara — which is estimated to cost Rs. 3,235 crore. It is for the project promoter to raise funds for this corridor.

One of the components of the corridor is the link between Porur and Vadapalani. As a result, areas such as Valsaravakkam and Virugumbakkam will also be covered.

The project will have one more corridor, which will be between Vandalur and Velachery, over a distance of 23 km. As per a conservative estimate, the cost will be around Rs. 4,000 crore, for which the State government has decided to seek assistance from the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA).

Originally, when the project was conceived about three years ago, there were four corridors, measuring a total length of 111 km.

The corridors pertained to the links of Vandalur-Velachery (23 km), Poonamallee-Kathipara Junction (16 km), Poonamallee-Vadapalani (18 km) and Vandalur-Puzhal (54 km). When the second tender was floated in December 2011, the authorities decided to take up three corridors initially, leaving out the Vandalur-Puzhal link. Later, the alignment of these three corridors was pruned to two corridors — Poonamallee-Kathipara and Vandalur-Velachery.