The Noida Metro Rail Corporation (NMRC) on Monday (7th June 2021), said that it will resume operations on its Aqua Line from June 9 as the partial Covid curfew has been lifted. However, the metro services will be available only on weekdays from 7am to 8pm, officials said.
The officials said the NMRC is making necessary preparations at all of its stations and on trains as well, so as to ensure that passengers follow social distancing norms and other Covid-19 protocols. The services were suspended on May 1 after the second wave of the pandemic had ravaged the Guatam Budh Nagar district.
“As the weekend curfew is still in place, train service will not be operated on weekends,” said Ritu Maheshwari, managing director, NMRC.
The officials said that passenger screening teams will be deployed at each station to check the temperature of commuters and to ensure that they follow Covid guidelines such as wearing a mask and maintaining social distance. The parking facility will be available at Sector 51 station only, they said.
Maheshwari said that the social distancing norms will be strictly followed on NMRC premises and inside the trains.
The NMRC has also tweaked the frequency of trains during peak and non-peak hours. During peak hours (8am to 11am and 5pm to 8pm), the trains will be available at 15 minutes interval (as against 7.30 minutes on normal days) and during non-peak hours the frequency will be 30 minutes (earlier 10 minutes).
Notably, on normal days, the train services are available from 6am to 10pm.
The NMRC in a statement said it would continue to run fast trains once the service resumes on Wednesday. Of the 21 stations on the Aqua Line, trains during peak hours skip a total of 10 stations which usually have lower ridership. This move is aimed at reducing travel time between Noida and Greater Noida by nine minutes.
Meanwhile, NMRC on Monday also issued a fresh tender to hire a developer for the Aqua Line’s extension to Greater Noida West — 9.6km route from Sector 51 station to Sector 2 in Greater Noida West. VV Reddy, deputy general manager, NMRC, said that the elevated extension will have five metro stations – Sector 122 and Sector 123 in Noida, and Sector 4, Ecotech 12 and Sector 2 in Greater Noida West.
“NMRC had issued three tenders earlier, but we did not get suitable applicants. We have made some changes in the tender documents to attract more applicants/developers,” Reddy said.