Sreedharan unhappy with Airport Metro frequency

Last Updated: Tuesday, March 29, 2011 - 22:13

New Delhi: On a surprise inspection of the
showcase Airport Metro Express Line on Tuesday, Delhi Metro chief E
Sreedharan returned "disappointed" on a host of operational
issues like current frequency of 20 minutes and
non-availability of refreshments at stations on the high-speed
corridor.

Sreedharan, who inspected the stations on the corridor for over two hours in the morning, stressed the need for increasing the frequency on the route that connects the city’s shopping hub of Connaught Place with the Indira Gandhi
International Airport for the convenience of fliers and other
commuters.

The Airport Express Line, which takes passengers from CP to IGI in just 18 minutes, was thrown open to the public on February 23 and since then only a little more than 7,000
people have been using the line everyday.

Sreedharan, who inspected the Airport Line for the first
time after its inauguration, boarded the train at New Delhi
station and travelled up to the terminating station of Dwarka
Sec-21 and pointed out several things like less frequency,
lack of proper signage and announcements, DMRC spokesman Anuj
Dayal said.

"He got down at all the operational stations on the
corridor and personally inspected the amenities available for
the commuters till 11 AM. Out of the total six stations, only
four New Delhi, Shivaji Stadium, IGI Airport and Dwarka
Sec-21 are operational.

Two other stations Dhaula Kuan and Delhi Aero City --
are likely to be made operational next month.

Sreedharan went for a surprise inspection of the corridor
to see for himself the functioning of the Airport Line as well
as the facilities available for commuters.

Dayal said the DMRC chief "was disappointed with the
present frequency of 20 minutes" and stressed the importance
of increasing the frequency of trains on the corridor to
provide better connectivity and service to the commuters.

Currently, six trains on the corridor run at a frequency
of 20 minutes from 6 AM to 10 PM.

The concessionaire had earlier said that it would
increase the service to 20 hours from the current 16 hours
soon.

The DMRC chief also wanted the maximum speed of the train
to be increased to the promised speed of 120 km per hour as
trains currently run only at 105 km per hour.

"Sreedharan expressed his dissatisfaction about the
passenger amenities, including the lack of tea/ coffee vending
machines that are yet to be provided at the stations.

"He said the stations must have refreshment kiosks for
the convenience of the commuters", Dayal said.

Sreedharan also pointed to the fact that there is no
mobile connectivity in the underground sections which causes
severe inconvenience to commuters and wanted these to be
rectified.

Dayal said the DMRC chief also pointed out that the lack
of proper signage was causing inconvenience to the commuters
and noticed that the announcements made inside the trains and
at the stations were not giving the correct information on
some occasions.

He also said there should be seamless platform-to-
platform connectivity for commuters coming from Delhi Metro
network to the Airport link and vice versa at Dwarka Sector 21
Metro station.

Dayal said Sreedharan, however, appreciated the efforts
of the Airport Express Link staff in keeping the system neat
and clean.

"He said that the corridor was one of the most
technologically advanced in the world and was at par or even
better than most other Airport Metro links in the other cities
globally", he said.

PTI



First Published: Tuesday, March 29, 2011 - 22:13

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