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September 28, 2017

Environmental impact study of Blue Line project ordered

Karachi

 
September 28, 2017

Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah on Wednesday directed the transport department to conduct an environmental impact assessment of the Bus Rapid Transit System’s Blue Line scheme so that the project’s construction could begin at the earliest.

This, he observed while presiding over a meeting held, at the CM House, to review the Blue Line bus project. The meeting was attended by Minister for Transport Syed Nasir Hussain Shah, Chairman Planning and Development Mohammad Waseem, Principal Secretary to CM Sohail Rajput, Secretary Finance Hassan Naqvi, Secretary Transport Saeed Awan, Director General Mass Transit Mohammad Athar and other concerned officials.

Supposed to be constructed under the public-private partnership model, the BRTS was initially planned to be about 48 kilometres long – starting from Guru Mandir and leading up to Bahria Town via Teen Hatti, Liaquatabad No10, Shahrah-e-Pakistan, Sohrab Goth and the M-9 motorway. It is also to connect the Bahria Town to the Jinnah International Airport via the MM Alam Road.

As per the plan, the Blue and the Green Line buses are to ply on a common route from Guru Mandir to the Merewether Tower. While various other BRTS schemes are already under construction, the Government of Sindh received a proposal, from a private firm, to develop and make the Blue Line project a part of the Mass Rapid Transit system, in line with the Japan International Cooperation Agency’s (JICA) recommendations, under the public-private partnership model.

The proposal comprises the project’s concept, design, technical details, project cost summaries and the financial model the project will be based on. The provincial government has appointed an advisory consortium to validate the revised plan of the project.

The overall route and infrastructure of the project and subsequently its financial and legal structure has been changed as per suggestions collected during meetings held under the CM’s chairmanship.

According to the revised evaluation, done by consultants, the airport route would be constructed later and the BRTS buses will run along the M-9 motorway with the regular vehicular traffic.

The Transport and Mass Transit Department (TMTD) submitted the PC-I of the project’s infrastructure plan during the meeting. Following the PC-1’s review by the technical committee, the modified PC-1 of Rs18 billion was sent back to the Sindh Planning and Development Department.