Construction work of underground as well as elevated stations and a depot for the Delhi-Ghaziabad-Meerut RRTS corridor has gained pace along with the installation of the first special steel span of the first regional rail of the country in the year 2021.
As the year 2021 closes on, work on the RRTS project has witnessed progress despite the Covid-19 situation.
Production of modern trainsets for Delhi-Ghaziabad-Meerut RRTS corridor has commenced at a factory in Savli, Gujarat by NCRTC. These trainsets are using state-of-the-art, next-generation technology for comfortable commuting experience.
NCRTC is implementing India’s first RRTS corridor connecting regional nodes of Meerut and Ghaziabad with Delhi. The 82-Km long corridor will bring down travel time to less than 60 minutes that consumes 3-4 hours presently.
With a design speed of 180 Kmph and an average speed of 100 Kmph, RRTS is aimed at bringing people and places closer in the National Capital Region (NCR) and offering fast, safe, reliable, comfortable, efficient, seamless, and sustainable transport solutions.
"The year 2021, despite the adversities brought by spread of Covid-19, was a tremendous year with regards to the progress of Regional Rapid Transit System (RRTS) project. Much was achieved and a lot of work gained pace," said a senior NCRCT official.
NCRTC began construction of Duhai depot at the beginning of the year. Duhai depot will play an essential role to manage operations of 17 km long priority section of the corridor having five stations: Sahibabad, Ghaziabad, Guldhar, Duhai and Duhai depot.
The depot will have stabling lines, maintenance facility, automatic train washing plant, driver training centre, back up operational control centre and depot control centre.
The elevated portion in Delhi for RRTS corridor starts from Sarai Kale Khan RRTS station, passing over Barapullah Flyover and crosses Yamuna River to reach New Ashok Nagar RRTS station.
To connect the elevated structure, the construction work in Delhi picked momentum this year.
While the first pier of the elevated section of RRTS corridor in Delhi was constructed in June, since then, numerous pillars have been established and now a viaduct is being constructed near Ashok Nagar RRTS station.
The year 2022 will see construction at a rapid pace in Delhi with the city getting ready for India’s first Regional Rail.
The first bridge that is being constructed, which is parallel to DND, has also seen heightened activity and well foundations for the same are being done at a rapid pace. The 1.3 km long RRTS bridge will have 32 piers and 44 m long spans to connect these piers.
This year was also marked by the beginning of construction work at underground stations. Apart from elevated section, the construction of the underground section of RRTS corridor began with concreting of Diaphragm wall (D wall) of stations in Delhi and Meerut.
To construct an underground station, first D wall is to be constructed, thereafter concourse and platform levels are constructed.
In Delhi, at Anand Vihar, the construction of launching shaft for Tunnel Boring Machines (TBMs) – ‘Sudarshan’ commenced for tunnelling work. With this milestone, construction of this underground section for RRTS corridor entered the next stage.
NCRTC has successfully completed the installation of the first Special steel span of the Delhi-Ghaziabad-Meerut RRTS corridor over the mainline Indian railway crossing near Vasundhara, Ghaziabad.
The special steel span is 73 meters long and weighed around 850 tonnes. It has been installed on piers of about 10 metres in height on both sides of the Indian railway tracks by using winch and roller arrangement.
State-of-the-art, low maintenance RRTS Track laying started between Guldhar and Duhai. It began with the arrival of rails and currently rail welding is in progress.
All these will contribute to the final stages of the priority section which will take final shape in the coming year — 2022.
Under “Make in India” guidelines, a pre-cast track slab factory was established at Shatabdi Nagar in Meerut by NCRTC. NCRTC is using Ballast less tracks for 180 kmph design speed of RRTS trains. Since there is no certified ballast less track available in India for this speed, NCRTC opted for "Pre-cast Slab Track System" for RRTS track.
Production of modern trainsets for Delhi-Ghaziabad-Meerut RRTS corridor commenced at a factory in Savli, Gujarat by NCRTC. These trainsets are using state-of-the-art, next-generation technology for comfortable commuting experience. The production of 40 trainsets (30 trainsets for RRTS train of six coaches each and 10 trainsets for MRTS (Mass Rapid Transit System for local transit in Meerut) train of three coaches each) are being done. The trainsets are scheduled to arrive in 2022 for the trial runs that are slated to begin next year.
Platform Screen Doors (PSDs) have been indigenously developed in India for the first time by NCRTC this year. PSDs, which were imported so far, will now be manufactured in our country. PSDs have become a vital component of modern transportation infrastructure.
These act as a security barrier between the platform/train/track and commuters, besides helping in better crowd management at the stations. To begin with, Duhai Depot will be the first RRTS station to be installed with indigenous PSDs.
Production of lifts and escalators began this year and next year will see installation of these, beginning from Duhai depot.
All the five RRTS stations in the priority section have started taking shape. Cross arms of Sahibabad and Ghaziabad have been established that has shaped concourse level of both stations. For Ghaziabad station, I-girders were installed for the construction of platform level.
The work of concourse and platform level at Guldhar and Duhai stations has begun. At Duhai depot, the construction work of Operations and control centre (OCC), stabling and inspection lines of RRTS trains have begun. The coming year will see construction being completed to a level of running trials and eventually launching operations.
Work also started for setting up five Receiving Sub Stations (RSS) for power supply in the entire corridor of Delhi-Ghaziabad-Meerut RRTS.
An RSS (Receiving Sub Station) is being constructed at Ghaziabad to supply power to the priority section where electricity will be drawn from the grid of UPPTCL (Uttar Pradesh Power Transmission Corporation Limited).
The RSS will convert it to 25 kV and 33 kV capacity with the help of transformers thereby ensuring continuous power supply to the RRTS train and station respectively. With this, RRTS is moving towards operationalising the project.
NCRTC also began installation of Overhead Equipment (OHE) on the viaduct in the 17 km long priority section. In the priority section, erection of 30 per cent masts have been completed, while balance is in progress.
Under the first phase of the process of OHE installation, masts were erected on the constructed RRTS viaduct.
The year saw NCRTC move to a new corporate office — GatiShakti Bhawan, located at INA Market in Delhi.
NCRTC is in the process of finalising the vendor for Automatic Fare Collection (AFC) which will offer QR Code based ticketing (Digital QR & Paper QR) and EMV (Europay, Mastercard, Visa) and RuPay Open Loop contactless card based on NCMC (National Common Mobility Card) standards.
Thus, RRTS commuters will be able to use any NCMC card issued by any Metro or Transport Authority or Financial Institutions in the country.
Presently, more than 14,000 workers and 1,100 engineers are working tirelessly on the 82 km long RRTS corridor where in about 1,200 piers of the elevated section have been erected, more than 50 km of foundation work and approximately 14 km of viaduct have been completed.
Trial runs on the priority section are expected to begin in 2022 with trains arriving in the city soon.
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