MUMBAI (Metro Rail News): As the assembly elections approach, the Maharashtra cabinet has taken up the approval of various projects.
On Tuesday, the cabinet approved a proposal to declare the Mumbai-Pune Hyperloop Transport project a public infrastructure project. The Hyperloop is an ultra-high-speed ground transportation system comprising a system of tubes through which a pod may travel free of air resistance or friction conveying people or objects at high speed from one point to another.
The Hyperloop is proposed from Bandra Kurla Complex to Wakad in Pune, a distance of 117.50 km and when commissioned it will cover the distance in 23 minutes.
It is estimated to cost Rs 70,000 crore which will be through foreign investments in installments. It will be executed by the Pune Metropolitan Region Development Authority (PMRDA). In a press release, chief minister Devendra Fadnavis said the project will be completed in two phases. Phase I is from Gahunje to Usse village in the PMRDA region, a distance of 11.8 km.
This will be completed in 2.5 years and is estimated to cost Rs 5,000 crore, he said. If successful then Phase II will cover the entire distance from BKC to Wakad and will be executed in 6-8 years.
“The stretch for phase I has been selected as a test track because all the technical challenges that can be experienced along the entire expressway can be found on this patch. The company will get a sense of the challenges along this stretch,” said a senior official.
The cabinet approved the tag of a ‘public infrastructure project as it would help streamline permissions for the project and also the government has approved the consortium of Hyperloop Technologies INC and DP world FZE as the project proponents.
The contractor for the project will be approved by the Swiss Challenge Method. The consortium will prepare the Detailed Project Report.
Under the Swiss Challenge Method, the design is put out for bids. Anyone can offer an alternative. If the alternative is better than the original proposal then it is accepted. “If there is no better proposal then the consortium will execute the project,” said a senior official.