May 25, 2018
Chennai, May 25, 2018: The JICA-funded Chennai Metro Project's (Phase I) underground sections from Nehru Park to Central Metro and between Little Mount and AG-DMS Station were inaugurated today, heralding a new era of sustainable transport in Chennai.
The flagging-off ceremony was inaugurated by Mr. Edappadi K. Palaniswami, Hon'ble Chief Minister, Govt. of Tamil Nadu (GoTN) and Mr. Hardeep Singh Puri, Hon'ble Union Minister of State for Housing and Urban Affairs (MoHUA). The other dignitaries present at the ceremony were Mr. Kenji Hiramatsu, Ambassador of Japan to India; Kojiro Uchiyama, Consulate-General of Japan in Chennai and Mr. Yoshiomi Yoshino, Senior Representative, JICA India.
The objective of the Project is to meet the growing traffic demand by building a Mass Rapid Transit System which will promote modal shift and help to mitigate worsening of road traffic, to curb the pollution level and eventually to lead to sustainable urban development. The section of Corridor 1 from Little Mount to AG-DMS covers the significant arterial road of Chennai City i.e. Anna Salai. The Corridor 2 section between Nehru Park to Central Metro provides connectivity with important rail transport hubs in Chennai which are Central Metro and Egmore Intercity and Intracity Rail Terminal.
Mr. Takema Sakamoto, Chief Representative, JICA India Office said, "The inauguration of these metro rail stretches will open a direct link between Central Metro and Chennai airport. This link will improve public transport in the city dramatically and will enable the industrial workers and other people to move towards the central business districts of the city for work. The expanding Chennai Metro is continuously easing mobility of mega-city by bringing the modal shift, which would transform the urban scenario. Chennai metro will further contribute towards improvement of transit and living standard of people by giving them safe means of travel, reduction in pollution level and decrease in traffic. Chennai should become the shining example of JICA's contribution to a sustainable future for the citizens of Chennai."
The metro rail stretch between Nehru Park and Central Metro will cover a distance of around 3 km, comprising three stations -Nehru Park, Egmore and Central Metro. The other metro rail section operating between Little Mount and AG DMS will cover a distance of almost 5 km and consists of five stations which include Little Mount, Saidapet, Nandanam, Teynampet and AG DMS. By completion of the 2 sections, the total length of Chennai Metro under operation will be around 35 km. These new stretches will further reduce the average travel time and occurrence of road accidents in Chennai. The Metro is equipped with Automatic Fare Collection (AFC) System from M/s. Nippon Signal which is a highly efficient Japanese technology.
Chennai Metro Rail Limited (CMRL) is the Executing Agency of the Project.
Chennai is the fourth-largest metropolitan area in India. The population of the Chennai Metropolitan Area was about 7.1 million in 2001 and grew to 8.7 million in 2011. Population density in Chennai City is about 25,000 people per square kilometre, which is one of the most in the world, overtaking Mumbai and Kolkata. The newly inaugurated stretches will mitigate the difficulties caused by increasing road traffic in Chennai. These expansions in the city's metro rail network will eventually lead to balanced regional development and enhancement of environmental conditions.
The Chennai Metro Project is an extraordinary example of Indo-Japanese partnership and has gained success that other Metro projects are looking forward to emulating.
JICA has extended 183,595 million Japanese Yen (approximately INR 11,300 crore) in concessional Official Development Assistance (ODA) loans since 2008 to develop the Chennai Metro Project. Overall, JICA has extended ODA loans of 1.1 trillion Japanese Yen (approximately INR 60,000 crore) to help develop metro systems in Delhi, Bengaluru, Kolkata, Chennai, Mumbai and Ahmedabad.
Opening remarks delivered by Mr. Yoshiomi Yoshino, Senior Representative, JICA India
Passengers using Automatic Fare Collection (AFC) System from M/s. Nippon Signal which is a highly efficient Japanese technology
L-R: Mr. O. Panneerselvam, Deputy Chief Minister, GoTN; Mr. Edappadi K. Palaniswami, Chief Minister, GoTN; Mr. Hardeep Singh Puri, Union Minister, MoHUA; Mr. P. Radhakrishnan, Minister of State for Finance and Shipping, GoTN; Mr. Kenji Hiramatsu, Ambassador of Japan to India, riding the newly inaugurated metro
Source: Official Web Site of Chennai Metro Rail Limited (edited by JICA)
Established by a specific law as an incorporated administrative institution under the Government of Japan, the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) aims to promote international cooperation as the sole Japanese governmental agency in charge of ODA implementation. JICA is the world's largest bilateral donor agency. JICA works as a bridge between Japan and emerging countries, and provides assistance in the form of loans, grants and technical cooperation, so that the emerging countries can strengthen their capabilities.
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