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December 19, 2016

$8.2 billion tracks to be constructed in first phase of CPEC


December 19, 2016

ISLAMABAD: Some 1,872 kilometres long gate-free and signal-free railway tracks from Karachi to Peshawar costing $8.2 billion would be constructed under first phase of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) project, sources told The News.

According to official data, the project would be completed in two phases in five years by 2021 on engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) mode. Phase-I will be completed by December, 2017 and Phase-II by the year 2021. The data showed that the work to build fence around the tracks, similar to motorway, and underpasses and overheard bridges would be initiated in first week of January.

"The railway track from Karachi to Peshawar via Kotri, Multan, Lahore and Rawalpindi (including Taxila-Havelian) would be upgraded and 15 percent of the total cost of the project would be borne by Pakistan and 85 percent would be financed from relevant Chinese financial institutions under the CPEC project," it showed.

Official documents showed that work would also involve 1,598 kilometres upgrading of existing double and single track and overhauling of 930 kilometres existing double line, construction of 676 kilometres new track from Lalamusa to Peshawar including Karachi-Kotri/Hyderabad with UIC-60 rail, construction of tunnels and bridges and culverts along with allied structures and facilities.

APP adds: Islamabad: Railway tracks from Karachi to Peshawar would be made gate-free and signal-free under the next phase of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor.

According to Geo news channel a fence would be built around the tracks similar to Motorway and an underpass or overhead bridge would be built at every gate on the tracks, the sources informed. Work on the project would be initiated from January.

The first phase of the project would focus on railway tracks between Rawalpindi and Peshawar. The signaling system in Pakistan Railways would also be upgraded under the project.

According to the sources the purpose behind making railway tracks gate-free and signal-free is to make train journeys safer and faster for the public. The fencing and bridges would also lead to a reduction in accidents.

Once the project is completed the tracks would be able to accommodate high-speed trains. The railways authorities have completed the planning for the project, the sources added.  


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