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PRT project in the Yamuna Expressway to be longest in the world, ET Infra

NOIDA: At 14.6 km, the proposed personal rapid transit (PRT) project in the Yamuna Expressway region connecting the upcoming Noida airport and the proposed Film City in Sector 21 will likely be the longest in the world, a report prepared by Indian Port Rail and Ropeway Corporation Limited (IPRRCL) said.

The IPRRCL, hired by Yamuna Expressway Industrial Development Authority to prepare the detailed project report (DPR), reported five PRT or pod taxi projects in the world have transported over 1 billion passengers per km, with one safety incident.

At 13.2 km, the longest and oldest PRT service in Morgantown, USA, was started by Boeing in 1975. It connects the three West Virginia University Morgantown campuses and the city downtown area. It has transported over 400 million passengers per km.

At 9.7 km, the second longest PRT system is at Tianfu Airport, Chengdu, China, and began operations in 2022. The PRT systems taken for case studies by IPRRCL are in Heathrow Airport, London (3.9 km); Masdar City, UAE (1.4 km); and Suncheon, South Korea (4.6 km).

London’s service became operational in 2011 and runs for 18 hours. The 22 pod taxis that are part of the service connect three stations. They have a 4-6 passenger capacity each and run at a maximum speed of 40 km/hour.

The Masdar City PRT, the shortest, has 2 stations-Masdar Institute for Science and Technology and North Car Park. Operating since 2010, the 10 pod taxis with a passenger capacity of 6 has transported over 2 million passengers so far. They run at a maximum speed of 40 km/hour.

The Suncheon Bay PRT system is a 5-km-long elevated track connecting the International Garden Expo to the International Wetlands Centre. While 6-8 persons can sit in a pod, another 6 can travel standing on the pod taxis that run at a maximum speed of 70 km/hour. Starting from 2013, the service has transported over four million passengers.

According to the IPRRCL DPR, the 14.6 km pod taxi corridor will run from Noida airport to Sector 29 (with stations at Handicraft Park, MSME Park, and Apparel Park) to Sector 32 (with stations near industrial units) to Sector 33 (with stations at Toy Park and near industrial units) and end at the proposed International Film City in Sector 21. There will be 12 stations in total. The corridor will be along 3m- to 5m-wide medians on 60m-, 75m- and 100m-wide roads.

As many as 690 pods will be introduced on the stretch in phases-101 pods in the first phase. The end-to-end journey will last 20 minutes with pod taxis travelling at a maximum speed of 40 km/hour. Each pod taxi will have a seating capacity of 6 persons. The concession period would be 35 years, including the two years required for construction.

The project being executed by YEIDA will come up in a public-private-partnership mode. In January this year, the PPP bid-evaluation committee directed IPRRCL to study PRT projects worldwide and submit a report.

YEIDA CEO Arun Vir Singh said, “Soon, the consultant will prepare the bid document (concession agreement and RFP) so that those, along with the present report, can be presented before the bid-evaluation committee. Once the committee approves the documents, a global tender will be issued.”

  • Published On May 8, 2023 at 05:17 PM IST

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