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Inauguration of India’s First Underwater Metro Section

Prime Minister Narendra Modi recently inaugurated the Howrah Maidan-Esplanade section of the Kolkata Metro, marking a historic moment for India’s metropolitan transportation network. This section is notable for being the country’s first metro tunnel constructed beneath a significant river, specifically the Hooghly River, which serves as a natural divider between Kolkata and Howrah.

Key Features of the Underwater Metro Tunnel

India’s Pioneer in Underwater Transportation

The newly inaugurated Howrah Maidan-Esplanade section stands as India’s first underwater transportation tunnel. It showcases the nation’s capability in embracing sophisticated engineering methods to enhance urban mobility.

Deepest Metro Station in India

Situated at a depth of 30 meters, the Howrah metro station is now the deepest metro station in India, further emphasizing the project’s architectural and engineering significance.

A Crucial Link in the East-West Metro Corridor

This 4.8-kilometer stretch is a critical component of the East-West Metro corridor, connecting important areas including the IT hub at Salt Lake Sector V. It represents a significant step towards improving the urban connectivity across Kolkata and Howrah.

Construction Excellence

Constructed at a cost of ₹4,965 crore, this section of the metro corridor exemplifies the blend of cost-effectiveness and construction excellence. The entire East-West Metro corridor stretches 16.6 km, with 10.8 km underground, including the underwater tunnel.

Enhanced Transit Efficiency

The metro is designed to cross the 520-meter underwater stretch in just 45 seconds, highlighting the project’s focus on rapid and efficient transit solutions for the city’s residents.

Prime Minister’s Engagement with the Community

During his visit, Prime Minister Modi not only rode the underwater metro but also interacted with school students and metro staff, highlighting the societal impact of the project. His journey alongside local leaders and officials underscored the government’s commitment to improving public transportation infrastructure.

Expansion of Kolkata Metro Network

In addition to the underwater section, PM Modi also inaugurated other vital sections of the Kolkata Metro, contributing to the expansion and modernization of India’s oldest metro network. These developments are poised to significantly enhance urban mobility in Kolkata.

Historical Context and Vision

The realization of the underwater metro section brings to life a vision that was first proposed over a century ago by British engineer Sir Harley Dalrymple-Hay. This project not only pays homage to historical proposals for urban development but also showcases India’s progress in making such ambitious projects a reality.

The inauguration of India’s first underwater metro section is a landmark achievement that not only enhances Kolkata’s urban transport infrastructure but also sets a new standard for public transportation projects across the country and globally.

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