Ahmedabad, India: The highly anticipated Ahmedabad-Mumbai bullet train project has encountered a roadblock, jeopardizing its progress. The National High-Speed Rail Corporation (NHSRCL) and Western Railway (WR) are locked in a standoff, halting construction on the Ahmedabad section since October 2023.
The crux of the issue lies in WR’s refusal to grant permission for building a crucial viaduct. This viaduct, planned between Sabarmati and Kalupur stations, requires blocking the third railway line due to its close proximity to the bullet train alignment.
NHSRCL sources expressed their frustration, highlighting the repeated appeals made to WR officials regarding the block’s necessity. However, their requests remain unanswered, leading to a complete standstill in construction activities.
The bullet train route encounters eight points of close proximity to existing railway tracks in Ahmedabad. The most critical zone stretches between Kalupur and Shahibaug cabin, encompassing a 2.2km section with three bidirectional lines.
NHSRCL officials explained the complexities involved. With a railway line on one side and residential areas on the other, constructing 290 piles, 58 pile caps, 58 piers, and 58 pier caps (for noise barriers) necessitates a two-year block on the third line, effectively stopping train movement.
This impasse throws a wrench into the project’s timeline and raises concerns about potential delays and cost overruns. Both NHSRCL and WR need to find a swift and amicable solution to get the bullet train project back on track.
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