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The Ministry of Megapolis and Western Development of Government of Sri Lanka has commenced the construction work of the first phase of the Colombo light rail transit project.
“We have now begun the first stage of the Malabe-Colombo Light Rail Transit system. According to the engineering plans, bore hole testing is currently being done on locations where pillars are being built. Five firms with expertiese are currently testing 200 locations”, said in the statement issued by the Ministry.
The light metro rail track will be built on concrete pillars erected in the middle of existing highways. According to the plan, the entire corridor will ail track and stations will be on elevated viaducts to minimize requirement of land acquisition.
The Ministry of Megapolis and Western Development is developning the Colombo Light Rail Project under a public-private partnership scheme. Ministry said that the construction work of the proejct will be carried out with minimum disruption to the daily activities of the public.
Accordign to the detailed project report (DPR), the first phase of the light rail transit system will connect Malabe to Colombo Fort will cover a distance of 17 km with 16 stations along the route. The stations names are – Fort/Pettah, Transport Centre, St. Joseph’s College, National Hospital, Borella, Cotta Road, Walikada, Rajagiriya, Sethsiripaya, Battaramulla, Palan Thuna, Robert Gunawardena Mawatha, Lumbini Temple, Thalahena, Malabe, IT Park.
A yard for light rail maintenance and services will also be constructed near Chandrika Kumaratunga Mawatha in Malabe.
The total estimated cost of the light rail project is USD 2.2 billion and the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) has signed an agreement with the Government of Sri Lanka to grant assistance of USD 1,800 million as a soft loan.
Once the project is completed the people will be able to commute from Malabe to Fort/Pettah which will reduce the total journey time to 35 minutes. The trains will be operated in every four minutes during peak hours.
Colobmbo Light Rail Transit System will be the first of its kind to be developed in the Sri Lanka.
This article first appeared on urbantransportnews.com
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