Pune: District Guardian Minister Girish Bapat on Thursday said the extension of the metro up to Nigdi is possible only after the stretch of the route till Pimpri becomes operational. The Nigdi extension will be taken up on a war footing once the first phase is over.
Bapat’s statement disappointed many of those in Pimpri Chinchwad who were optimistic about the extension of the project in the first phase.
Bapat was speaking at the ground-breaking ceremony of the metro railway station in Vallabhnagar. He said, “The Metro railway authorities have undertaken work of preparing the detailed project report (DPR) for the extension of the project till Nigdi. The work is time-consuming. It will be completed by the time the ongoing work is over.”
Work of the Swargate-Pimpri route has picked up pace. A 7.2-km stretch of the first phase metro route falls within the jurisdiction of the Pimpri-Chinchwad Municipal Corporation (PCMC). The metro project is being executed as per 2009 DPR, which has the route till Pimpri only. The State government gave in-principle approval for the extension in 2013. However, its DPR is not ready.
The PCMC asked Mahametro to prepare the DPR for this extension. The extension will cost between Rs 130-140 crore per kilometre. PCMC has offered to bear the cost. Nigdi is the gateway to Pimpri Chinchwad city. There is 150 per cent ridership on the PMPML buses during peak hours from Nigdi. A large number of people use public transport from Nigdi. Therefore, it is an ideal starting point for the Metro rail. There is a need for a multi-module transport hub at Nigdi.
Bhosari MLA Mahesh Landge met Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis in Nagpur and conveyed public sentiments to him.