KARACHI: Three options were discussed for the Green Line Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) project on MA Jinnah Road at a meeting on Friday.
Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah presided over the meeting and said proposals should be submitted on each option – an at grade intersection, underpass and elevated portion – by the next meeting, which will be held after 10 days.
The meeting was attended by Transport Minister Syed Nasir Hussain Shah, Federal Secretary for Communication Siddique Memon, Planning and Development Chairperson Mohammad Waseem, Green Line Project Director Soaleh Farooqui, Principal Secretary to the CM Sohail Rajput, Transport Secretary Saeed Awan, Local Government Secretary Ramzan Awan, project consultant Zubair Channa and others.
The chief minister was told that the federally-funded Green Line BRT project is more than 65% completed. The original scope of the project from Surjani to Guru Mandir is nearing completion and will be finalised by the end of December.
The meeting’s participants were told that one of the key components of the Green Line is the construction of the state-of-the-art, highly automated dedicated bus depot in Surjani Town near Abdullah Chowrangi. The Karachi Infrastructure Development Company Limited (KIDCL), the company responsible for construction of the project, has requested the Sindh government to provide 12 acres for the establishment of the bus depot.
The chief minister was told that the government has allotted only four acres, which was not enough for the depot. The CM directed his principal secretary and the transport secretary to work out the proposal and arrange the additional eight acres so that bus depot could be established as per international standards.
Murad was told that the conceptual design of the Green Line extension was developed after the approval of the extension from Guru Mandir to Municipal Park and further into Saddar. The longitude profile from Guru Mandir towards Numaish will be underground.
According to the proposal, the BRT section after the Numaish intersection is proposed to be elevated through a signalised intersection of Seven Day Hospital and Garden Square up till Tibet Centre, which would be turned around with an elevated turn facility at Municipal Park and the last BRT station along the Green Line. As per requirement of the government, a provision of the extension of the BRT at Municipal Park near Eidgah would be developed.
The at grade intersection proposal stated that the Green Line pass through four major signalised intersections and one major traffic light from Jameela Street. The lanes would reduce to three in some stretches with two bus stations. The underpass construction would lead to MA Jinnah Road being blocked at two points during the construction period, which would last up to four months.
The elevated segment would, however, obstruct the view of the Quaid’s Mausoleum, complained one KIDCL board Member.
Murad concluded the meeting by directing officials to consult with experts on all the three options within the next 10 days. “After 10 days I will hold another meeting to make the final decision so that the work stopped at Numaish can be restarted,” he said.