Eleven years after Bengaluru’s Kempegowda International Airport (KIA) opened, work on a metro rail line that will connect the city to the airport has finally started. The Bangalore Metro Rail Corporation Limited (BMRCL) has invited tenders for a major chunk of the Central Silk Board Junction to KIA line via KR Puram.
A survey has been conducted to ascertain the number of properties that will be affected on this stretch. Work on the 55-km line has a deadline of 2023. Tenders have been invited for two work packages relating to the 19.5 km stretch on the Outer Ring Road line from Silk Board to KR Puram (Phase 2A), involving 13 stations.
Tenders for the stretch between KR Puram and the airport (Phase 2B) will be called for in February in the form of three packages, said a senior official of the Bengaluru Metro Rail Corporation Limited (BMRCL).
Concurrently South Western Railway (SWR) is planning to run additional trains to KIA on its Bengaluru-Devanahalli railway line once the halt station near the Trumpet flyover, 5 km from the airport, is ready.
Sources said the Kempegowda International Airport Limited (KIAL) will fund the halt station, which is expected to be complete in two months. Currently, SWR operates four pairs of trains: Bengaluru and Kolar, Yeswanthpur and Devanahalli and Channapatna as well as Kolar-Whitefield-Kolar.
When completed, the metro line and the additional trains to the airport should ease up the congestion on roads leading to the airport. Traffic to the airport is currently completely road-centric, resulting in great traffic congestion.