The recently inaugurated underwater metro in Kolkata — first in the country — is as rightly put by Union Railway Minister Piyush Goyal, a well deserved, “Durga Puja gift for the people of the City of Joy.” By Kumar Shree
The Phoolbagan station of Kolkata Metro's East-West Corridor is a Durga Puja gift for the people of the City of Joy.
It is an underground station with modern amenities.
— Piyush Goyal (@PiyushGoyal) October 17, 2020
India’s Union Railway Minister Piyush Goyal recently inaugurated the Phoolbagan metro station in Kolkata. While its classy interiors, world-class passenger facilities and a bevy of other features made headlines straight away, it is once again creating ripples in the news, and rightfully so. After all, it is the first underwater metro, not just in Kolkata, but in the entire country as well.
The Phoolbagan metro station forms a part of the 16.6-kilometre-long East-West Corridor, connecting the west bank and the east bank of the river Hooghly. Howrah on the west bank and Salt Lake City on the east bank are two prominent parts of the city, and this corridor connects these points, running both above as well as below the earth’s surface. It also goes through underwater tunnels within the Hooghly river. The trains running on this line can easily cross the 520-meter-long underwater tunnel in less than a minute.
Another reason that makes it special is how it takes one down the memory lane, as it is after a gap of 25 years that the city has built an underground metro station. Before the Phoolbagan metro station, the MG Road station on the north-south main line of Kolkata Metro was the only previous underground metro here. All other metro stations that came up later were either elevated or at ground level. .
Moreover, it is also estimated that by 2035, as many as 10 lakh people will be using East-West Metro corridor. The route will connect multiple significant landmarks of the city such as Howrah, Sealdah, Esplanade, and Salt Lake Sector-V, which is the IT hub of Kolkata.
The estimated completion cost of the project is a whopping amount of INR 8,575 crore. The project will most likely reach completion by December 2021.