The Indian Ministry of Railways has kicked off procurement for a new multi-billion dollar suburban railway corridor in India’s financial capital, Mumbai.A request for qualifications (RFQ) has been issued calling on the private sector to help develop the so-called Elevated Rail Corridor (ERC) project on a design, build, finance, operate and transfer basis.
Interested parties should submit their qualifications by October 16, with a tentative bidding deadline earmarked for February 12, 2013.
To view the RFQ, please click here.
The new 63-kilometre railway line will run from Churchgate to Virar, along the current Western Railway route, and is estimated to cost some INR 210 billion (€3 billion; $3.8 billion).
Close to 43 kilometres of the new corridor will be on elevated track, with 8 kilometres running underground and the remaining 12 or so kilometres at ground level.
Some 1.7 million passengers are expected to use the new suburban line when it begins operating in 2019-2020. According to the RFQ, the concessionaire will collect pre-determined user fees along the line.
The ERC is one of several projects planned to reduce congestion on the city’s existing suburban rail system, which operates more than 2,300 train services daily over a 319-kilometre route.
Other projects include phase one of the Mumbai Metro project, which started construction in 2007, but has faced delays due to issues surrounding the granting of viability gap funding and environmental clearances. It is now expected to be operational by March 2013, a year behind the original due date.
The $425 million metro project is being developed by a Reliance Infra-led consortium, which includes France's Veolia Transport and the Mumbai Metropolitan Regional Development Authority.
A $490 million Mumbai Monorail project being built by Larsen & Toubro, and Scomi Engineering is expected to be completed by year-end.