Delhi Metro Phase 3 – May 2016 Tunneling Update

Here’s my Delhi Metro Phase 3 tunneling update for May 2016!

All the data in this post is correct as of May 1 and details from the April update can be viewed here. 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 Phase 3 page & map or the DMRC’s Phase 3 map.

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 160.574 km is being built 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 significant sections not being constructed by a TBM are:

1) Kalkaji Mandir – Lotus (Bahá’í) Temple shaft – This section 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) Nizamuddin Station – Ring Road shaft – This section is being constructed by the cut and cover method – see Google Earth satellite imagery.

Here’s a line wise update on different sections:

Blue Line – Line 3 – Dwarka – Najafgarh

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

Number of Pending TBM Breakthroughs: 2

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 2015 – see: Delhi Metro Starts Tunneling on Najafgarh Branch of the Blue Line. As of the morning of May 1, 421 rings (589 m) have been built out of 475 rings (665 m) and the 1st breakthrough can be expected to take place this month. Construction on this small new section of the Blue line is progressing on schedule.

Violet Line – Line 6 – Central Secretariat – 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 Complete
CC-07 Era – Metrostroy Jama Masjid Lal Qila Complete
CC-07 Era – Metrostroy Lal Qila Kashmere Gate Complete

Number of Pending TBM Breakthroughs: 0

• The Central Secretariat – Mandi House section opened for commercial operations on June 26, 2014. A further extension northward to the ITO station was opened on June 8, 2015.

• The final TBM breakthrough for this line took place at the Delhi Gate station’s TBM receiving shaft in mid March: TBM Makes Final Breakthrough at Delhi Metro’s Delhi Gate Station

While the DMRC has announced that it would open this line by September 2016, internally it’s aiming to open it by Independence Day (Aug 15) and has chalked out a plan to send their application for the CMRS’ inspection by June 30. See: DMRC Internally Aiming to Start ITO – Kashmere Gate Line Before I-Day for more details. Overall, this extension is delayed by more than half a year.


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 Complete
CC-20 J Kumar – CRTG Naraina Vihar Delhi Cantt Shaft Complete
CC-18 Pratibha – FEMC RK Puram Shaft Bhikaji Cama Place In Progress
CC-18 Pratibha – FEMC Bhikaji Cama Place Sarojini Market Complete
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

Number of Pending TBM Breakthroughs: 5 (see list)

• Since the April update, one TBM breakthrough has taken place. See details & images:
TBM Makes Breakthrough at Delhi Metro’s Bhikaji Cama Place Station

• In May, I’m not expecting any TBM breakthroughs to take place.

• For the crucial Azadpur – Majlis Park section of CC-04, the CEC-CICI JV this past month commissioned the 2nd ‘rescue’ and overall last ever TBM to excavate & build this line’s tunnels. See details & images: Last TBM Commissioned for Delhi Metro’s Pink Line at Majlis Park

As things stand right now, this line’s construction (both underground & elevated) is running more than half a year behind schedule. It would be a miracle if the new Hyundai Rotem trains procured for Phase 3’s new lines will even venture out of the Mukundpur depot this year for conducting trial runs.


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 Complete
CC-23 Pratibha – FEMC Chirag Delhi Greater Kailash In Progress
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

Number of Pending TBM Breakthroughs: 5 (see list)

• 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 the April update, 1 TBM breakthrough has taken place on this line. See details & images:
TBM Makes Breakthrough at Delhi Metro’s Greater Kailash Station

• In May, I’m expecting 2 breakthroughs to take place, both on the CC-23’s Hauz Khas – Kalkaji section:
1) At the Nehru Enclave station for the down-line tunnel in the first week. The TBM building this tunnel from Greater Kailash was commissioned in November 2015.
2) At the Greater Kailash station for the down-line tunnel towards the end of the month. The TBM building this tunnel from Chirag Delhi was commissioned in February 2016.

With a mid-May 2016 deadline for both contractors of CC-23 and CC-27, construction of the underground component of this line is progressing a more than a couple of months behind schedule and the underground section (Kalkaji – Janakpuri W) is expected to only start operations in phases from the middle of 2017.

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!


written by

Global traveler who prefers mass rapid transit

6 Responses to "Delhi Metro Phase 3 – May 2016 Tunneling Update"

  1. Sahil says:

    Correction: Violet Line is being proposed to open by Aug 16, whereas you mentioned Aug15. Nevertheless, a big update. Thanks.

    • TMRG says:

      Hi, thanks for your message! ‘August 15’ is to inform non-Indians(foreigners) about when India’s Independence Day is and not meant to refer to August 2015 🙂

  2. sunny says:

    when are u expecting trial run on Magenta line ; Mangu Singh is claiming the same by July 2016 .Are u agree with this.

    good work by you ,all the best.

  3. LakshmanPST says:

    Great work… It will be nice if you can provide the prospective completion dates for each of the Under Progress tunnels in the table…

    • TMRG says:

      Hi, the progress by some of the TBMs, especially between Shankar Vihar-Munirka and Vinobhapuri-Ashram, is very unpredictable and keeps changing, so I tend to avoid giving prospective dates that give false hope. But since you ask, I do know that L&T (cc-27) wants to wrap tunneling work up by August and similarly J Kumar (cc-24) wants to get it done by October. Pratibha (cc-18 & cc-23)’s last 3 breakthroughs will be completed by mid-June. Let’s see how that goes!


Leave a Reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *