BENGALURU: Air travellers are likely to shell out at least Rs 60 extra on the User Development Fee (UDF) paid presently at the Kempe Gowda International Airport.
The Bangalore Metro Rail Corporation Limited (BMRCL) will shortly send a proposal to the Centre seeking its nod for the move. The Corporation is also open to the idea of running non-stop trains from the City to the airport.
Additional Chief Secretary of Urban Development department, Mahendra Jain, who took charge as BMRCL’s new Managing Director on Sunday told The New Indian Express, “To mobilise the contribution of Rs 1,000 crore to be made by BIAL for the Airport Line (Metro Phase-2B), the UDF will be increased anywhere between Rs 60 and Rs 80. This will be a temporary move until the required amount is met. Now that the Cabinet has approved the Detailed Project Report of the Metro link to airport, a proposal to effect the increase in user fee will be sent as soon as possible to the Civil Aviation Ministry and the Airport Economic Regulatory Authority in this connection.”
At present, domestic users of the airport pay Rs302 as UDF while international passengers pay Rs 1,200. Asked about the chances of receiving a green signal for the move, Jain said, “We are expecting it to be cleared. This is a very reasonable proposal as it is a slight increase over what passengers are already paying.”The move will be a temporary one and the increase would be withdrawn after the required funds are mobilised, the MD said.
Due to the new Metro Policy which mandates 10 percent contribution from the Centre, the Centre will be funding Rs 500 crore, he added. “With funds mobilised, this line is now set to be completed by 2021. It was initially supposed to be ready only in 2025 or 2026 as part of Metro Phase-III,” the MD said.
Elaborating on other specifics relating to this route, Jain said, “We are looking at having specially designed trains which will have racks to hold luggage of passengers. Right from the first train, there will be six coaches in every train.”
Tenders for the Metro Airport Link line will be floated soon and work will start within six months, the MD said. “The airport line is an extension of the Nagavara-Gottigere Line for which tenders have been floated. Both the lines are set to be ready by 2021.”
Another major move planned is the introduction of many non-stop trains from Nagavara to the airport during peak travel time to the airport (5 am to 8 am).With the second terminal being planned for KIA, the 20 million passengers to KIAL will double to 40 million when it is ready. “The nearly 1 lakh employees in both the terminals will have easy access to their work places. With M G Road proposed as an Interchange station, public from all corners of the City can change over here,” the ACS said.Jain ruled out two incoming and outgoing tracks as suggested by experts. “There will only be a 5-metre strip of land that we get near Yelahanka. We can only accommodate two tracks and not four on it,” he pointed out.
Airport line likely to cost s5,950crore
The DPR of the 29.62- km Airport line from Nagavara to KIA was approved by the State Cabinet on Monday. It is estimated to cost Rs 5,950 crore and has a completion deadline of 2021. BIAL will fund Rs 1,000 crore, the State Rs 1,250 crore and the Centre Rs 500 crore. The remaining Rs 3,200 crore will be raised through loans.