Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis on Saturday said the state will ask the Union Government to give the go ahead to begin work on Corridor-I (from Nigdi to Swargate) of the stalled Pune Metro project to avoid further delay in the mass transit train plan in the traffic-clogged city.
There is a difference of opinion among stakeholders over Corridor II, mainly regarding elevation and alignment. Corridor-I doesn’t face any such objections. The Chief Minister announced a six-member committee chaired by Pune Guardian Minister Girish Bapat to decide about Corridor II within a month.
On Saturday, Fadnavis chaired a meeting of stakeholders attended by public representatives from Pune, Pimpri Chinchwad and rural parts of the district. Former Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar, Baramati MP Supriya Sule, Guardian Minister Girish Bapat, Minister of State Dilip Kamble, Maval MP Adhalrao Patil, Shrirang Barne, Pune Mayor Dattatraya Dhankavade, Pimpri-Chinchwad Mayor Shakuntala Darade, PMC Commissioner Kunal Kumar, PCMC Commissioner Rajiv Jadhav and Pune Collector Saurabh Rao attended the meet.
The Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) submitted the project plan in 2009 but the project did not take off owing to differences among political parties, environmentalists and activists on whether it should be underground or elevated on certain stretches of the corridor.
On Saturday, Fadnavis said although the “elevation” issue is far from resolved, the state government will go ahead with Corridor-I as all stakeholders have approved the plan.
“We heard views presented to us. We decided that since there’s no consensus on the plan for Corridor-II, we will go ahead with work on Corridor-I. We will approach the Union Government to give us a go ahead for to commence work on Corridor-1. We will form a committee to decide on Corridor-II,” said Fadnavis.
Fadnavis said the committee will be chaired by Bapat. Principal Secretary (Urban Development), DMRC principal adviser E Sreedharan, economist Vijay Kelkar, Pune Collector Saurabh Rao and PMC Commissioner Kunal Kumar will be on the committee.
“I have asked the committee to undertake studies, listen to all viewpoints and submit a report within a month on Corridor-II. Which will be forwarded to the Union Government for approval,” said Fadnavis.
In February 2014, the centre gave its in-principle approval for taking up phase 1 of the Metro rail project after NCP chief and the then Union minister Sharad Pawar personally pitched for it. Phase I covers 31.5 km along two corridors that include 16.58 km from Pimpri to Swargate and 14.92 km from Vanaz to Ramwadi.
The meet could not decide on the contentious issue of granting four FSI to areas next to the metro track. In 2009, DMRC proposed an FSI of four on either side of the corridor to achieve greater population density through vertical development of residential and commercial properties.