Bangalore Metro – April 2016 Tunneling Update

The Bangalore Metro Rail Corporation Ltd (BMRCL) just published their April 2016 newsletter which can be viewed here! First let’s take a look at some new snaps of the two underground lines, and then dive into analyzing the data contained within it.


Cubbon Park metro station – Photo Copyright: BMRCL


Cubbon Park metro station – Photo Copyright: BMRCL


Vidhana Soudha metro station – Photo Copyright: BMRCL


KR/City Market metro station – Photo Copyright: BMRCL


Chickpete metro station – Photo Copyright: BMRCL

The newsletter includes some old images of Majestic station which can be skipped. Lots of newer images of the same areas within the station can be found here. The tunneling data in the newsletter was recorded at the start of the month and as such does not reflect recent progress made in the first 13 days of this month. However, since data from the March newsletter is available, a valid comparison can be made to see the progress made over the past month (March) with the month before (February).

Purple line –  Tunneling on the Purple line’s 4.8 km underground section between Magadi Road and MG Road was completed in March 2014 and trials started in November 2015. After many announcements stating it’ll be operational in January, the BMRCL pushed the opening to March-end. In late March, they applied for the CMRS’ safety inspection which took place on April 5th & 6th (see lots of images). Following that, the BMRCL received verbal clearance on April 8 with some conditions on how to operate services. Since then, the BMRCL has been implementing the suggestions and also conducting trial runs in the nights to fine tune services.
Key takeaway: As of April 14, they are yet to announce the dates for inaugurating the line and starting commercial services.

Green line – The Green line’s tunnels from the North Ramp to the South Ramp are being constructed by a JV of Coastal & TTS with some help from CEC-CICI. Only 3 more tunnels are left to be completed. Here’s a map displaying the incomplete Green line’s underground section between the North Ramp & Chickpet in which 3 TBMs are currently operating:

The three arrows represent the direction of tunneling by the TBMs on the Green line's underground section

The three arrows represent the direction of tunneling by the TBMs on the Green line’s underground section
view Bangalore Metro map

Here’s a table which compares the progress made by the 3 TBMs:

TBM Origin Destination Launch Date Distance Mar 1 April 1
Krishna Chickpet Majestic Dec 2015  747m  273m  417m
Kaveri Chickpet Majestic Feb 2015  747m  593m  618m
Godavari North Ramp Majestic May 2013  973m  747m  867m

The Krishna TBM made a breakthrough at Chickpet station on August 31 from the KR (City) Market station after a slow and tiring journey of 22 months. After being put through repairs for 112 days, the TBM was launched on December 22 towards Majestic for one final drive. In the month of March, it excavated an impressive 144 meters.
Distance Left –  330 meters

The Kaveri TBM was launched from the Chickpet station in February 2015 and has covered only 25 meters since the March 2016 update. The reason for this includes hard rock and the precarious nature of buildings en-route to Majestic, many of which had to be evacuated.
Distance left –  129 meters

The Godavari TBM had a new cutterhead installed on it in late July 2015 and restarted tunneling towards Majestic in mid September 2015. Since the March 2016 update, it progressed by an impressive 120m and is expected to make a breakthough in mid April.
Distance left – 80 meters

Northern Section: Sampige Road – Majestic

The distance between the 2 stations is only 1.5 km. In March, it was smooth sailing for TBM Godavari (working on the northbound tunnel) which excavated underneath the Kempegowda Bus Station and is now expected to pop out of Majestic station’s north shaft by next week. If the BMRCL starts trial runs by August 2016, then there’s a small possibility of the Green line getting connected to the Purple line at Majestic station by the end of this year. Otherwise, we’ll have to wait until Q1 2017.

Southern Section: Majestic – National College

TBM Krishna continued its excellent advancement rate aided by new cutting discs and the evacuation of many fragile buildings for TBM Kaveri which is still limping towards Majestic station. With that, I’ve now slightly revised my previous estimates by a couple of months and expect both Kaveri & Krishna to complete Phase 1’s tunneling work in July-August 2016. After taking into account the time it takes to lay the track bed, install tracks, electrical, signalling and telecommunication equipment, I expect trial runs to begin in Q1 2017 and commercial operations to start in mid 2017. Does anyone else share this assessment?

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


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Global traveler who prefers mass rapid transit

11 Responses to "Bangalore Metro – April 2016 Tunneling Update"

  1. Prakash Nag says:

    Thank you for the regular updates. These jokers set December 2016 as the deadline for Phase 1, but the Purple line is still not open after tunnels got built in 2014. I don’t know how they plan to start Green line metro services this year. They do have one handy tool at their disposal – lying.

  2. shubangi says:

    Got this from a tweet from Mr. Vasanth Rao’s twitter feed.

    As on 11.04.2016 ( 8.00AM)
    Krishna 465m (310 rings) completed. 279m (186rings) bal

    Kaveri 625.5m (417 rings)completed.118.5m (79rings) bal

    GODAVARI 925.5m (617 rings) completed, 39m (26 rings) balance

    • TMRG says:

      With due respect to Mr. Rao, the meter to ring conversion is off. A typical segment used in Bangalore is 1.4m wide, but all the ratios above convert to 1.5m. The newsletter has in the past had its share of inaccuracies, but I choose to rely on it and use the 1st of every month as a benchmark instead of the twitter feed.

      • shubangi says:

        Thanks TMRG for the prompt and educative response. Man!! you sure have done your homework well about TBMS and rings!

  3. Srikanth says:

    great updates! and hope green lines open by mid 2017 at least!.. also hope all these stations, which are underground, are all flood proof as they are predicting above normal monsoon this year..

  4. parthasarathy says:

    METRO phase 2 should start immediately. Please start preliminary works on all lines simultaneously.
    Please divide the project and distribute all sections at once to construct. A lot of experience might have may come in the way to help for proper planning. Hope atleast Phase 2 should complete on time,

  5. Murli says:

    This months newsletter from BMRC is late. I keep looking out for it everyday but TMRG you seem to be smarter and faster 🙂

  6. sharavana says:

    when does the metro facility start from mysore road to byapanhalli ?
    there is not update on inagauration ?

  7. Mukund says:

    Egoistic and corrupt namma metro never ever took advice from delhi metro. They are busy changing the alignment on papers , first left side of jaydeva flyover than right side than break the flyover itself. Jokers of first degree.

  8. sheraj says:

    this link from Vijaya karnataka news paper says metro underground section is inaugurating on May 4th ? can you check ?


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