The first phase of the Mumbai Monorail, the 8.93-km Wadala-Chembur route in the eastern fringes of this city, will be formally inaugurated on Saturday and opened to the public on Sunday. The monorail will run at an average speed of 65 km an hour. The Mumbai Monorail corridor (19.17 km) is the world’s second longest, after Japan’s Osaka Monorail corridor (23.8 km). Once the entire monorail project is completed, it will connect Jacob Circle in south Mumbai with Chembur in eastern Mumbai. Initially, the monorail will run between 7 am and 3 pm. Every train will have four coaches, and can carry up to 560 passengers. From March, the monorail will run for 19 hours a day. Also, the number of coaches per train will be increased to six. CLICK HERE to view the photo-gallery Tickets have been priced at Rs 5-11.
Though monthly passes won’t be issued, there will be a system of smart cards. Initially, peak passenger capacity is expected to be 20,000 an hour, in one direction. Initially, the frequency between two trains will be 15 minutes. Subsequently, this will be reduced to nine minutes and finally, to three minutes. During the second phase, 10 additional trains, with six coaches, will be run. After the completion of the second phase, there will be 19 stations. UPS Madan, commissioner of the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA), said the 19.17-km monorail project would involve a cost of Rs 3,000 crore. Of this, Rs 1,900 crore has been spent so far. MMRDA Additional Commissioner Ashwini Bhide said phase-I involved a cost of Rs 1,100 crore. Madan said the second phase would be commissioned in a year.