India's First Underwater Metro Train to be Run in Kolkata Soon

Kolkata Howrah Metro station and the Mahakaran will be connected soon with East-West Line with an underwater train, which would run for one minute under a river. Technically speaking, the train would run in a tunnel, which is built under the riverbed.

This will be the country’s first underwater metro train and it will be functioning by 2021. This project is overseen by Kolkata Metro Rail Corporation Limited. The entire route will be 16.6 km long and will be completed by year 2021. By 2035, the train is believed to have a popularity of one million passengers per day.

Underwater Metro Kolkata
Underwater Metro Train Kolkata

Facts to Know about Underwater Metro

1. Underwater Tunnel

This train’s main beauty is the underwater tunnel which would run under the famous Hooghly River. The tunnel will run 520 m underwater. There will be two tunnels, one east-bound and the other west-bound. The tunnels are buried 30 m below the riverbed. The train will be running 80 km per hour and a total of one minute under water. Out of the entire route, 10.8 km is travelled underground and 5.8 km is covered elevated.

Kolkata Underwater Metro Tunnel
Kolkata Underwater Metro Tunnel

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2. Stations in the Route

The station in the elevated route are Sector-V station, the Karunamoyee station, Central Park railway station, City centre station, Bengal chemical railway station and the Salt lake stadium station.

The stations in the underground route are Phoolbagan station, Sealdah railway station, Esplanade station, Mahakaran railway station, the Howrah station and the Maidan.

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3. Underwater Tunnel Technology

The underwater tunnels are built by KMRCL, whose technology is used by Eurostar, a famous undersea tunnel train running between Paris and London. The underwater tunnel is as deep as the length of a ten-storey building. This technology is a resounding marvel, which is first in the country.

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4. Estimated Cost

The entire cost of the tunnel is INR 60 crores, as per the estimate. The total cost of the train route is assumed to be INR 9000 crores. The tunneling work started in April, 2018. The route is scheduled to be completed by 2019. This includes the tunnels and the complete train route. The tunnels are 5.5 m in diameter and has 275mm thickness wall. Both the tunnels are around 16 m away from each other. There are walkways in the tunnel, which would be used during emergency evacuation. According to the officials, the walkways are the hardest part of the construction project.

As the next project, there is a seven-kilometer under-sea tunnel work going on between Mumbai and Ahmedabad for the country’s first bullet train. This drilling work is being conducted for analyzing the soil condition. This bullet train will be running at a speed of 350 km per hour and would be the first of this kind in the country.

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What Officials Say

Piyush Goyal, the Union Railway Minister announced in Twitter that this project is an example of an excellent engineering and he considers the project as a symbol of progress and pride for the railway department and the country. A video was released by the Railway department to explain the safety precautions taken to avoid water leakage into the tunnel.

Kolkata was the first city to receive the first metro train in the country and today, it is about to become the first region to receive the underwater tunnel for railway. This is an immense progress to the nation and people.

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