Delhi-Ghaziabad-Meerut corridor of India’s first rapid rail saw its maiden tunnel breakthrough for the Delhi section on Saturday. The tunnel-boring machine, Sudarshan 4.1, achieved the breakthrough in Khichdipur in East Delhi. The 3-km tunnel is the longest in Delhi made by any tunnel-boring machine, and its construction started in January 2022. More than 14,000 high-precision pre-casted tunnel segments have been used to ensure a long tunnel life, the National Capital Region Transport Corporation (NCRTC) said in a statement.
Four tunnels are being constructed in Delhi for the 82-kilometer Delhi-Ghaziabad-Meerut Regional Rapid Transit System (RRTS) for movement in both directions. NCRTC said two parallel tunnels of about 3 km are being constructed between Anand Vihar and Khichdipur towards New Ashok Nagar RRTS station. Another set of parallel tunnels of about 2 km is being constructed between Anand Vihar and Vaishali towards Sahibabad RRTS station.
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The RRTS tunnels have a diameter of 6.5 metres, which is highly optimised compared to global benchmarks of tunnels for a similar design speed of 180 kmph, with wider and higher rolling stock.
“NCRTC today achieved its first tunnel breakthrough for the Delhi section of the Delhi-Ghaziabad-Meerut RRTS corridor,” NCRTC said. Manoj Joshi, secretary of the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs, initiated the breakthrough by pushing the lever in the presence of Vinay Kumar Singh, MD, NCRTC.
“RRTS aims to ease regional mobility in NCR, thereby reducing vehicular road congestion and lowering air pollution. Multi-modal integration has been an important consideration while planning and implementing RRTS. I am confident that it will enhance the quality of life in NCR,” Joshi said.
The tunnel, going towards New Ashok Nagar, has negotiated very closely with existing metro station piling structures, the foundations of expressways, and non-engineered buildings in Patparganj and Khichdipur, said NCRTC.
NCRTC is targeting to open the entire 82-km-long RRTS corridor for the public by 2025. Before that, it will operationalise a 17-km long priority section between Sahibabad and Duhai.
The other tunnel boring machine, Sudarshan 4.2, has completed tunnelling of about 2.5 km in the same direction. And Sudarshan 4.3 and 4.4 are boring tunnels in the direction of Sahibabad from Anand Vihar, and they have completed tunnelling more than 1.5 km and 1 km, respectively.
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