Kolkata is expected to have a fully functional underwater tunnel connecting Howrah to Kolkata under the Hooghly River by 2023. The 16.6 km-long stretches of the runner would be 520 metres under the river bed. Moreover, the tunnel would be well-equipped with walkways to allow passengers to move freely in an emergency.
The Kolkata Metro Rail Corporation (KMRCL) is entrusted with building the Kolkata East-West Metro. The concerned officials said that more than 80 per cent of the work construction had been completed, and the line is expected to function by 2023.
502 Metres Of Tunnel Under The River
Mithun Ghosh, the site supervisor for the project, told the media, "Important Passage work has also been done. Passengers can be taken out through the particular passage if a technical problem arises inside the water tunnel area. The station is being built under the Hooghly River at a depth of 33 meters. 80 per cent of work has been completed, while 20 per cent is yet to be finished. It will start functioning by 2023", Hindustan Times reported.
The tunnel is 16.6 km long, of which 10.8 km runs underground and 502 metres run under the water.
Project Cleared In 2006-07
The UPA government had cleared the East-West corridor in 2006-07, and the project cost was Rs 4,874 crores then. Earlier, the expected deadline for the project was August 2012, which was initially postponed to 2015, and then further pushed to 2019.
Shapoorji Pallonji had imported sophisticated tunnel boring machines from Switzerland to construct the project. However, the project expenditure increased to Rs 8,575 crores, and the project work was delayed because of the onset of the health epidemic.
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