CDWP clears Karachi Circular Railway project
ISLAMABAD: The Central Development Working Party (CDWP) on Thursday cleared Karachi Circular Railway (KCR) as a Modern Urban Railway project and referred it to the Executive Committee of the National Economic Council (ECNEC) for further consideration. ECNEC if final approving authority for mega projects or any project involving foreign components.
According to China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC)’s website, KCR is a proposed project under CPEC, which will be constructed in Public-Private Partnership (PPP) mode. The project is a part of improvement of transport infrastructure including road network, provision of Public Transport- Mass Transit facilities and Traffic management in Karachi, the largest metropolis.
Under the project, the 43-kilometer dual track Urban Rail Mass Transit System will be constructed in a period of three years. The estimated cost of the project is over Rs. 27o billion, which will provide reliable, safe and eco-friendly public transport to the metropolitan city of Karachi. The meeting was informed that KCR is expected to serve a daily ridership of 457,000, which is expected to soar to one million a day by the end of the 33-years concession period. It will deploy the use of electric trains and will be operational round the week. Under the plan, 30 stations would be constructed along the corridor covering the most densely populated areas of Karachi.
KCR commences from the existing Karachi city station, moves along the main line of PR on Drigh Road Station and will further goes across Shahrah-e- Faisal and enters into Gulistan-e- Johar, and Gulshan-e- Iqbal. KCR will also pass through the older residential areas of North Nazimabad, Nazimabad leading to SITE area and further to the Port, then reaches back to Karachi City Station.
The development of KCR as modern Urban Mass Transit System will add to the existing public transport facilities in Karachi, which have fallen short to meet the incremental demand over the last few decades due to non-availability of modern mass transit facilities and decline in supply of large buses, while the city continues to expand.
Deputy Chairman Planning Commission Dr. Jehanzeb Khan attended the meeting of CDWP, which cleared the project and referred it to ECNEC. The officials of Railways, representatives of the provincial government and other relevant stakeholders, also attended the meeting.