India’s Railway Minister, Suresh Prabhu, on Saturday afternoon inaugurated construction work on Kolkata Metro’s 16.34 km Line-2’s Esplanade Station at an event held remotely at the Howrah Railway Station.
Designed by RITES, this station will be built underneath the Esplanade Tram Depot’s land, and in its first stage connect up with the existing Line-1’s Esplanade Station to allow easy transfers. In the future, an additional underground station box will be constructed here to serve as the northern terminal of the 15.75 km Joka – Esplanade line (Line-3), making it the city’s first 3-line interchange, and depending on its completion timeframe, perhaps India’s second after Delhi’s Kashmere Gate Station which just got connected with a 3rd line in May.
Here’s a crude alignment of how all 3 lines will meet at Esplanade.
Red: Existing Line-1 – tracks are a depth of 11.73m | Blue: Under Construction Line-2 (“EW Line”) – tracks will be at a depth of 26.23m | Green: Under Construction Line-3 (civil construction bids yet to be invited for underground section) – tracks will be at a depth of 11.73m
Line-2 was originally supposed to meet Line-1 at Central Station, but a lack of interest by the state government to carry out land acquisition forced the operator in 2015 to realign the line and have them meet further south at Esplanade.
Note that he also inaugurated a new escalator at Rabindra Sarobar Metro Station. Yes, an all new escalator. Bravo.
Construction work for the station (estimated at Rs 274.05 crore) and its associated twin tunnels to Sealdah Station will be carried out by the ITD-ITD Cem JV as part of package UG-2 which they were awarded in February 2010. Here’s an image of its guide wall under construction:
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