The 3.8 km ropeway link connecting Varanasi’s Cantonment Railway Station and Godowlia Chowk will be developed with an investment of Rs 461 crore.
In a move to decongest road traffic, a ropeway service is coming up in Varanasi to provide the last mile connectivity to commuters in the city.
The National Highways Logistics Management Ltd (NHLML), a subsidiary of NHAI, has invited bids for the first ropeway project for city commuters in India.
The 3.8 kilometre ropeway link connecting Varanasi’s Cantonment Railway Station and Godowlia Chowk will be developed with an investment of Rs 461 crore.
This will enable passengers to travel 3.8 km in just 17 minutes. A total of 218 cable cars will be deployed to ensure the frequency of this service in less than a minute. Each car will have 10 seats and at full capacity, around 4,500 people will be able to travel in one hour in one direction.
The success of the project will pave the way for providing a similar link for last mile connectivity in other cities so that people can beat the traffic jam on congested roads.
The successful bidder will be responsible for completion of the project in three years and maintain and operate the project for 15 years, according to the bid document.
The tender document specifies that the bidder will ensure the stations and cable cars used in this project are disabled-friendly. It also says that all facilities must be designed to accommodate wheelchairs, baby prams and prosthetics. The cable cars will also have to be equipped with public address systems and have a passenger information system that uses visual displays to enable hearing-impaired passengers to access information.
The project will be developed under an ‘hybrid annuity model’ where the government will make a part of the payment upfront to the successful bidder during the construction stage and the remaining amount will be paid in installments over certain years. The ropeway link will have five stations — Varanasi Cantonment station, Vidya Peeth, Rath Yatra, Girja Ghar and Godowlia Chowk.