Delhi Metro Phase 3 – December 2015 Tunneling Update

Here’s a comprehensive list of Delhi Metro’s Phase 3 tunnels and their current progress as of December 1 2015! For my November 2015 post, please see the November 2015 Tunneling Update. Beneath each table, I’ve included additional notes with information. In case you’re unaware of Delhi’s geography or need a map to help visualize what goes where, then you can refer to the Delhi Metro Rail Corp’s map located here.

Photo Copyright: Anindito Mukherjee - Popular Science

A tunnel built for the Violet line in Phase 2 – Photo Copyright: Anindito Mukherjee

According to the footnotes on the DMRC’s Phase 3 map, 48.06 km of the 190 km Phase 1 & 2 network is underground. In Phase 3, 53.835 km of the 159.327 km will be underground.

Phase 3 includes a total of 40 sections of which 38 have/will be built using a Tunnel Boring Machine (TBM). That’s a total of 76 tunneling drives. The other 2 sections not being constructed by a TBM are:

1) The Kalkaji Mandir – Lotus (Bahá’í) Temple shaft on the Magenta line has been constructed using the New Austrian Tunneling method (NATM) which has previously been used to tunnel underneath the Ridge for the Airport Express line and beneath Chawri Bazar and Saket for the Yellow line

2) The Nizamuddin Station to Ring Road shaft is being constructed by the cut and cover method – see Google Earth satellite imagery. In my November update, I had accidentally marked this as a TBM section. Apologies for that!

Here’s a line wise update on different sections:

Blue Line – Line 3 – Dwarka – Najafgarh extension

Contract Contractor Station/Shaft Station/Shaft Status
CC-66 HCC Sai Baba Mandir Shaft Najafgarh/MCD In Progress

This section was a late addition to Phase 3. The Letter of Acceptance to the contractor was given on 11.04.2014 with a completion deadline of 20.04.2017. Tunneling on the westbound tunnel began on November 2 – see: Delhi Metro Starts Tunneling on Najafgarh Branch of the Blue Line. Construction is progressing on schedule.

Violet Line – Line 6 – Central Secretariat to Kashmere Gate

Contract Contractor Station/Shaft Station/Shaft Status
CC-01 Pratibha-CRFG Central Sec. Shaft Janpath Operational
CC-01 Pratibha-CRFG Janpath Mandi House Operational
CC-05 L&T – SUCG Mandi House ITO Operational
CC-05 L&T – SUCG ITO Delhi Gate Complete
CC-05 L&T – SUCG Delhi Gate Jama Masjid In Progress
CC-07 Era – Metrostroy Jama Masjid Lal Qila Complete
CC-07 Era – Metrostroy Lal Qila Kashmere Gate In Progress

• The Central Secretariat to Mandi House section was opened for commercial operations on June 26, 2014. A further extension northward to the ITO station was opened on June 8, 2015.
• Since my November update, zero breakthroughs have been made between Delhi Gate & Jama Masjid. 
• Between Lal Qila (Red Fort) and Kashmere Gate, 1 TBM made a breakthrough on August 3 while a second breakthrough is expected to be made later this month.

CC-05 had a deadline of 29.07.15 while CC-07 had a deadline of 12.09.15, so overall construction on the Violet line is running at least half a year behind schedule.


Pink Line – Line 7 – Mukundpur – Shiv Vihar

Contract Contractor Station/Shaft Station/Shaft Status
CC-04 CEC – CICI Majlis Park Shaft Azadpur In Progress
CC-04 CEC – CICI Azadpur Shalimar Bagh Complete
CC-30 HCC Shalimar Bagh Netaji Subhash Place Complete
CC-20 J. Kumar-CRTG Mayapuri Shaft Naraina Vihar Yet to Begin
CC-20 J. Kumar-CRTG Naraina Vihar Delhi Cantt Shaft Complete
CC-18 Pratibha – FEMC RK Puram Shaft Bhikaji Cama Place Yet to Begin
CC-18 Pratibha – FEMC Bhikaji Cama Place Sarojini Market In Progress
CC-18 Pratibha – FEMC Sarojini Market INA Complete
CC-18 Pratibha – FEMC INA South Extension Complete
CC-18 Pratibha – FEMC South Extension Lajpat Nagar Complete
CC-24 J. Kumar CRTG Lajpat Nagar Vinobhapuri Complete
CC-24 J. Kumar CRTG Vinobhapuri Ashram In Progress
CC-24 J. Kumar CRTG Ashram Hazrat Nizamuddin Complete
CC-24 J. Kumar CRTG Hazrat Nizamuddin Ring Road Shaft In Progress

• Since my November update, a second breakthrough has been made between South Ex and Lajpat Nagar. With that, the tunnels between Vinobhapuri to Sarojini Nagar have been completed!
• Tunneling on the westbound tunnel from the RK Puram shaft to Bhikaji Cama Place will begin in mid December.
• A second breakthrough at Sarojini Nagar from Bhikaji Cama Place is expected to take place in January.

Overall, construction is largely on schedule, but the northern section between the Majlis Park shaft and Azadpur is running behind by a year and a half due to difficult tunneling conditions. Even if this section was completed today, land acquisition issues on the elevated section at Punjabi Bagh and Mayapuri would prevent the rest of the sections from opening up, so any potential delay that gets “realized” in early 2016 cannot entirely be blamed on this section.


Magenta Line – Line 8 – Janakpuri W – Botanical Garden

Contract Contractor Station/Shaft Station/Shaft Status
CC-34 HCC – Samsung Vikaspuri Shaft Janakpuri W Complete
CC-34 HCC – Samsung Janakpuri W Dabri Mor Complete
CC-34 HCC – Samsung Dabri Mor Dashratpuri Complete
CC-34 HCC – Samsung Dashrat Puri Palam Complete
CC-32 ITD – ITD Cem Palam Saddar Bazaar W Shaft Complete
CC-32 ITD – ITD Cem Saddar Bazaar E Shaft IGI-Domestic Complete
CC-32 ITD – ITD Cem IGI-Domestic Shankar Vihar Complete
CC-27 L&T – SUCG Shankar Vihar Vasant Vihar In Progress
CC-27 L&T – SUCG Vasant Vihar Munirka In Progress
CC-27 L&T – SUCG Munirka RK Puram Complete
CC-27 L&T – SUCG RK Puram IIT Complete
CC-27 L&T – SUCG IIT Hauz Khas Complete
CC-23 Pratibha – FEMC Hauz Khas Panchsheel Park Complete
CC-23 Pratibha – FEMC Panchsheel Park Chirag Delhi In Progress
CC-23 Pratibha – FEMC Chirag Delhi Greater Kailash Yet to Begin
CC-23 Pratibha – FEMC Greater Kailash Nehru Enclave In Progress
CC-23 Pratibha – FEMC Nehru Enclave Kalkaji Mandir Complete
CC-23 Pratibha – FEMC Kalkaji Mandir Lotus Temple Shaft Complete

• Apart from small sections at Saddar Bazaar & Shankar Vihar, the entire line is underground in south-west and south Delhi. The south-eastern section beyond Modi Mills is elevated.
• The Kalkaji Mandir – Lotus (Bahá’í) Temple shaft has been constructed using the New Austrian Tunneling method (NATM). For some cool images of it shot during construction, see: NATM Tunnel at Kalkaji in Delhi Almost Complete
• Since my November update, zero breakthroughs have been made on this line. This month, the first breakthrough between Panchsheel Park and Chirag Delhi is expected to be made and tunneling will begin between Chirag Delhi and Greater Kailash in early January.

Overall, the construction of this line is progressing on schedule as the contractors for CC-23 & CC-27 have a deadline of 18.05.2016 & 11.05.2016 respectively.

If you have any questions or need specific TBM launch/breakthrough  info, then please leave a comment below!

For more updates on Delhi Metro’s Phase III, check out the Delhi section of The Metro Rail Guy!


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Global traveler who prefers mass rapid transit

8 Responses to "Delhi Metro Phase 3 – December 2015 Tunneling Update"

  1. PEHook says:

    Why must we have passwords in order to see the NATM tunnel photos?


  2. pappu says:

    you only focussed on underground sections ,what about elevated section’s progress. Pls. provide info for magenta line as I am interested for the same.
    Will this line commission on time. Pls. elaborate in detail.

    • TMRG says:

      Hi, the Magenta line is coming along nicely and the elevated section will be opened in early 2017. I’ll post images of it whenever there is something substantial to post.

  3. Pulakit Bharti says:

    When is Magenta line expected to complete and start operation between Hauz Khas and Kalkaji. Is it possible that Kalkaji-Botanical garden section starts operation separately before other sections begin. And can any of these begin operations before Dec’16..
    Thank you in Advance.
    Also, I advice you to start making videos on YouTube. You’ll be a hit.

    • TMRG says:

      Hi Pulakrit, yes – the Kalkaji-Botanical garden section can and will start operations without the other sections since the depot is located nearby at Kalindi Kunj. December 2016 is a little unlikely since civil construction work is pending in Noida and parts of Okhla. System installation, testing, CMRS inspection and other variables will push this section’s inauguration to early-2017. All ‘In Progress’ tunnels between Kalkaji – Shankar Vihar are expected to be completed by July 2016 after which it can take up to a year for this section to start. My hunch is that they will open the Kalkaji to Janakpuri (w) section in one go. Thanks for your advice – I will definitely explore it 🙂

      • pappu says:

        If tunnels between Kalkaji – Shankar Vihar are expected to be completed by July 2016 after which it will take up to a year for this section to start & DMRC will open the Kalkaji to Janakpuri (w) section in one go.
        Then by this way project will get delay by almost 7-8 months but DMRC repeatedly declaring DEC. 2016 as deadline of the project.
        So whats ur comment on the same ???

        • TMRG says:

          Hi, the official tunneling deadline for both contractors on Shankar Vihar – Kalkaji is May 2016, so July would put the line back by only a couple months. Station finishing, testing and other parts can be done in parallel & accelerated to make the line start earlier than I anticipate. For example, even though tunneling between Delhi Gate and Jama Masjid is not complete, the in-station finishing work has already commenced. The next 3 months are crucial (tunneling and land acquisition approvals) and will decide the fate of the lines.


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