This news marks an excellent time for me to start tracking the 508 km Mumbai – Ahmedabad High-Speed Rail (Bullet Train) project which has been in the works for over 10 years now.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Japanese counterpart Shinzo Abe yesterday unveiled a foundation stone for the 508 km Mumbai – Ahmedabad high-speed rail project at an event organized at Sabarmati Railway Station – the line’s northern terminal in Ahmedabad.
The Rs 1.08 lakh crore project will be executed by the National High Speed Rail Corporation Limited, and the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) will provide a 50 year loan for Rs. 88,087 crore (81% of the project’s cost) under its Overseas Development Assistance programme. The loan has an annual interest of 0.1% and a moratorium for the first 15 years after the line becomes operational.
A detailed alignment hasn’t been released, but the line is planned to run elevated for 460.3 km, at-grade for 12.9 km and underground for 21 kms between Mumbai – Thane – Virar which includes a small 1 km section under Vasai Creek.
The line’s rolling stock will comprise of Shinkansen E5 trains which are capable to running at a maximum speed of 350 km/hour (220 mph) with operational speeds of 320 km/hour (200 mph). Trains will have two categories, executive & economy, and the fare is expected to be 1.5 times the existing first class AC fare on the Indian Railways’ current Rajdhani service. Around 35 trains will initially make 70 trips per day which is planned to go up to 105 trains in 2050.
Trains will be operated in 2 services –
• High Speed (2.58 hour journey): Ahmedabad (Sabarmati) – Ahmedabad (Kalupur) – Anand – Vadodara – Bharuch – Surat – Bilimora – Vapi – Boisar – Virar – Thane – Mumbai (Bandra Kurla Complex)
• Rapid High Speed (2.07 hour journey): Ahmedabad (Sabarmati) – Vadodara – Surat – Mumbai (Bandra Kurla Complex)
The line was originally planned to be ready in 2023, but Narendra Modi would like it open up on August 15 2022 to coincide with the 75th anniversary of India’s independence. As per a railway official, the line will be opened to private operators in the future.
For more updates, check out the High Speed Rail section of The Metro Rail Guy!