CII organized an International Conference on Urban Mass Transportation on October 4, 2014 in New Delhi, as part of its flagship event- International Railway Equipment Exhibition (IREE). The Conference was supported by Ministry of Urban Development, Government of India and Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC). The focus of the Conference was on Metro and Light Rail.
The aim of the conference was to review the latest developments in urban transport including Metro-rail engineering and use of advanced systems, technologies and innovations in all disciplines of the urban transport engineering across areas like business management, infrastructure, safety, design, manufacture and operation for futuristic growth.
Dr Sudhir Krishna, Secretary, Ministry of Urban Development, GoI addressing the participants during the inaugural of the Conference opined “India’s Growth story can be written on the canvas of transport system and the writing pen would be Urban Mass Transit system”. “Efficient Urban Mass Transport System is the only answer to the ever rising pollution levels, accidents and fatalities as also to reduce the current account deficit (CAD) by reducing dependence on petroleum. However, the ‘First Mile to Last Mile’ connectivity is still a major challenge and we are continuously working towards providing ‘First to Last Mile connectivity’ solutions to commuters so that Metro stations or bus stands are easily accessible from homes, hospitals, institutes and shopping centers etc”, he elaborated.
“Cities are indeed the engines of growth contributing 60% to the GDP with just 30% population, but the decision makers and local authorities should develop and maintain a public transit system that addresses the problems of severe congestion, deteriorating air and noise quality, traffic problems, energy sustainability and increasing number of road accidents while linking the economic angles as well in order to achieve success in true sense. Metro Stations can be turned into commercial hubs”, he further iterated. While strongly calling for adoption of latest technologies in Metro Rail, he emphasized that “To achieve the objective of an efficient and technologically advanced urban public transport system, we need to build domestic capabilities and upgrade the status of manufacturing in India because the costs of import and transportation of huge machines from abroad would be too high and unfeasible”.
“An efficient mass transport system can enable higher FARs per sqm, better and mixed usage of land by converting residential areas into commercial or institutional areas and hence generate economy. If this is in place and there is enough space, then desired policies can be worked out”, he added. “Bicycles and pedestrianism also need to be promoted and supported with conducive infrastructure to complement Metro rail. In this regard, the Ministry of Urban Development has been advising various states and their Metro boards coming up with urban transport projects to consider safety of cyclists and pedestrians and as also make the stations most accessible. Our Ministry is also supporting the states with equity funding schemes, grants and infrastructure and advisory support to enhance their urban transit system”. “Various metro projects under public private partnership (PPP) mode have been planned at Hyderabad, Kochi, Chennai etc while many more are in pipeline at locations across Lucknow, Gujarat, Orissa, Maharashtra, Assam, Tamil Nadu etc”, he added.
Dr Krishna also released the CII – Accenture Knowledge Paper on 'Urban Mass Transportation in India – Building Upon the Past, Looking Into the Future'.
“A country can progress if and only if cities are planned and proper public public transport and infrastructure is provided. We must follow China’s model which says – ‘A dollar spent in Metro Rail leads to 3 Dollars flow into the economy”, shared Mr Mangu Singh, Managing Director, Delhi Metro Rail Corporation Ltd. Mr Mangu Singh admitted that the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) faced technical challenges and quoted a report to show the many advantages of the metro network. He listed annual saving on fuel consumption of one lakh tonne, annual reduction in pollutants by 1.8 lakh tonne and a drop in the number of accidents in Delhi by 590.
While sharing the immense benefits of Delhi Metro like reducing pollution, congestion, travel time, parking woes and accidents of Delhites, Mr Mangu Singh shared that “DMRC has sown seeds of ‘Urban Rail Revolution’ and now Indian nine cities are following suit while nine more are planning the same. Delhi Metro carries 2.3 million passengers every day with an operational distance of 190 kms with 99% punctuality. Another 140 km long Phase 2 is being constructed which is targeted to be commissioned by 2016 and by 2021, we aim to touch 400 Kms”.
“CII has been continuously engaged in dialogue with various stakeholders for building a robust infrastructure sector and addressing specific issues with regard to verticals like roads & highways; airports & aviation; railways; ports & shipping; and urban infrastructure & housing. CII Infrastructure Division engages the Central & State Governments; the industry and other relevant authorities to work towards making Public Private Partnerships– PPPs– as one of the important milestones for increasing investments in Indian infrastructure. Conference on Urban Mass Transportation was one such initiative”, shared Mr Zubin Irani, Deputy Chairman, CII Northern Region & Senior Managing Director, United Technologies Corporation India Pvt Ltd.
For more information, please visit event website www.cii.in