Big Funding Boost For Chennai Metro Rail Phase 2: AIIB Grants Rs.2651 cr Loan For 26.09 km Lighthouse- Poonamallee Corridor 4

Snapshot

Beijing -based Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) announced on Thursday (Sep 30) that it has approved a USD 356.67-million (Rs 2651 crores) loan to the Government of India to support the expansion of the Chennai metro rail system.

Chennai Metro’s 118.9 km Phase 2 project comprising of 3 new lines was approved by the Tamil Nadu government in 2019 at an estimated cost of USD 9.32 billion (Rs. 69,180 crores). Phase 2 of Chennai metro project, will have 128 metro stations. Of the total 118.9-km, 76.3-km will be elevated and rest will be built underground. It will comprise of three corridors.

 

Beijing -based Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) announced on Thursday (Sep 30) that it has approved a USD 356.67-million (Rs 2651 crores) loan to the Government of India to support the expansion of the Chennai metro rail system.

AIIB is a multilateral development finance banking institution whose mission is financing the Infrastructure projects undertaken by member-nations. India is among the founding member of AIIB along with 57 other countries. While India owns 83,673 shares with capital subscription of $8.4 billion in AIIB, China owns 297,804 shares with $29.8 billion capital subscription.

Chennai Metro’s 118.9 km Phase 2 project comprising of 3 new lines was approved by the Tamil Nadu government in 2019 at an estimated cost of USD 9.32 billion (Rs. 69,180 crores). Phase 2 of Chennai metro project, will have 128 metro stations. Of the total 118.9-km, 76.3-km will be elevated and rest will be built underground. It will comprise of three corridors.

  • Madhavaram to SIPCOT (45.8-km) with 50 stations called the Corridor 3,
  • Light House to Poonamallee (26.1-km) with 28 stations called the Corridor 4 and
  • Madhavaram to Sholinganallur (47.0-km) with 46 stations called the Corridor 5.

The Central government has already given its approval for the implementation of phase II of the Chennai Metro Rail project, Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu MK Stalin recently informed the state assembly in August this year.

The project is being implemented by the Chennai Metro Rail Limited.

Line-4 (Orange Line): Light House – Poonamallee Bus Depot

AIIB’S loan will enable the expeditious construction of a 26.09 km new corridor in Chennai’s metro network as part of 118.9 km Chennai Metro Rail Phase 2.

To be called as the ‘Orange Line’, the under-construction corridor 4 will span from Lighthouse in the eastern end to Poonamallee Bypass in the west to ensure seamless multimodal transport across Chennai by providing integrated access to suburban rail, bus stations and the city’s main airport.

The cost of constructing the entire stretch of corridor 4 is estimated to be $2174.53 million (Rs 16,091 crores)

The corridor will consist of 28 stations, out of which 10 are underground and 18 are elevated. The stations in this line will will come up at Light House, Kutchery Road, Thirumayilai Metro, Alwarpet, Bharathidasan Road, Adyar Gate Junction, Nandanam, Panagal Park, Kodambakkam Sub Urban, Meenakshi College, Power House, Vadapalani, Saligramam, Avichi School, Alwarthirunagar, Valasaravakkam, Karambakkam, Alapakkam, Porur Junction, Chennai Bypass Crossing, Ramachandra Hospital, Iyyapanthangal Bus Depot, Kattupakkam, Kumananchavadi, Karayanchavadi, Mullai Thottam, Poonamalle bus terminus, Poonamallee Bypass, Poonamallee Bus Depot.

Project Funding

Providing big boost to the proposed expansion of Chennai Metro Rail, the previous Edapadi Palanisamy-led ADMK government in Feb this year allocated Rs. 3,100 crore in the financial year 2020-21 setting the ball rolling for the commencing the construction of phase 2 of the project spanning across 118.9-km.

During the presentation of the state budget on Feb 14, Deputy Chief Minister and State Finance Minister O. Panneerselvam said “In the budget estimates for 2020-21, a sum of Rs. 3,100 crore has been allocated for the Chennai Metro Rail Project as share capital assistance, subordinate debt and pass-through loan assistance.”

During the 2019-20 budget, Panneerselvam had allocated Rs. 2,681 crore for the phase-2 project as share capital and debt.

The Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) has already agreed to fund nearly Rs 2019 crore for a 52.01-km stretch in phase 2 of Chennai Metro Rail Project. JICA will be funding the stretches between Madhavaram to Sholinganallur (35.67-km) and from Madhavaram to CMBT (16.34-km) under Phase-II of Chennai Metro Rail Project for a total length of 52.01-km.

The estimated cost of this length is Rs 4094 crore of which, the loan assistance from JICA will be in the order of Rs 2019 crore.

Project Benefits

The Chennai Metro Rail phase 2 project is expected will address traffic bottlenecks and reduce greenhouse gas emissions by increasing public urban transport options.

“This project is aligned with AIIB’s mandate to support high-quality and sustainable infrastructure. The improvement and integration of the transport sector in Chennai will further promote trade and economic growth,” said AIIB Vice President, Investment Operations, D. J. Pandian.

“With this project, female passengers would have access to a safer and convenient mode of public transportation with knock-on effects such as increased opportunities to participate in school, work and social activities. The residential and commercial establishments along the new corridor will also benefit from enhanced accessibility and connectivity as well as increased economic opportunities.” AIIB said in the press release

The project’s design and construction will have environmentally friendly features to help reduce its carbon footprint. In addition to solar panels installed on the roofs of the elevated stations, the project will have dedicated spaces for bicycles and green vehicles, and signage to raise environmental awareness. The project also integrates climate change resilience features to reduce its vulnerability to climate-related events.

AIIB has so far approved 28 projects in India, with a total amount of USD6.7 billion. The energy and transport sectors have received the highest amount of AIIB’s financing.