INDIA: The cabinet has approved the two-line Agra Metro project, which as well serving one of the largest cities in Uttar Pradesh will serve tourist destinations including the Taj Mahal and Agra Fort. Completion is planned in five years at an estimated cost of Rs83·8bn.
Line 1 would run for 14·0 km from Sikandra to Taj East Gate, with six elevated and seven underground stations serving destinations including the Taj Mahal, Agra Fort, Raja Ki Mandi station and the medical college.
Line 2 would run 15·4 km from Agra Cantt to Kalindi Vihar, with 14 elevated stations serving Agra Cantt station, Collectorate, Sanjay Place and densely populated residential areas.
There would be interchanges with the railway and bus stations, with feeder networks of motorised and non-motorised last mile transport; as part of its approval the national government has required improvements to local bus services within a year.
The project is to be managed by Uttar Pradesh Metro Rail Corp, which is to be formed by restructuring Lucknow Metro Rail Corp which is owned 50:50 by the national and Uttar Pradesh state governments. The project will be financed by the national and state governments and through soft loans from bilateral and multilateral international funding agencies. The state government has allocated Rs1·75bn for the 2019-20 financial year.
There would be a value capture mechanism to benefit from transit-oriented development and development rights along the metro corridors, and further income would come from rentals and advertising as well as well as fares.