While we see the First Phase of the Project is estimated to be completed by 2019, the State Government has given its stamp of approval for the Second Phase of the Metro Rail project in Ahmedabad connecting Mahatma Mandir, Sachivalaya, Gift City & PDPU. Second Phase will extend from Motera to Mahatma Mandir, officials of the MEGA (MetroLink Express for Gandhinagar & Ahmedabad) said. First Phase Of The Project By 2019The authorities plan to finish the phase-I of the project, connecting Thaltej and Vastral & APMC to Motera by the 2019-end. Metro rail services from Vastral to Apparel Park in Khokhra will go commercial by 2019. The state plans to have the first metro trial run soon after the elections. Commercial operations will need a final nod from the CMRS (Commissioner of Metro Rail Safety), which takes some 18 months. About The Metro Phase-IIThe estimated cost of the phase-II is to be Rs 6,758 crore (approx US$ 1039.6 Million). The 34.6km long Phase-II will be completely elevated. Phase-II will have 24 metro rail stations. Work on the phase-II will begin as soon as the Government of India sanctions it. The DPR (Detailed Project Report) of Phase-II, was prepared by the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC). “In order to achieve the maximum benefits from the project, the DPR made 2014 for Ahmedabad Metro Rail Project Phase-I projected that connectivity to Gandhinagar would be provided from the North-South corridor of Phase-I. Accordingly, the 2017 DPR has been prepared for Phase-II, which will connect Ahmedabad and Gandhinagar,”GIFT City Metro Line To Take PPP ModelAccording to the new metro rail policy, MEGA authorities have decided to extend the Metro 6km into GIFT City. The 6km long project will be taken up by GIFT city using the PPP (Public-Private Partnership) model. One station outside GIFT City would be funded through the project cost, but the cost of the 6km elevated corridor & 3 station inside GIFT city would be borne by GIFT. The route was in the proposal sent to the government of Gujarat but as the Union government changed the policy, GIFT was included via PPP & a revised proposal was approved, the officials said.Sky will be the limit for Metro users in Ahmedabad. The sky over Ashram road and some other parts of the city may soon be festooned with skywalks, once the Metro rail project becomes operational. The city will have four or more skywalks at different points to enable commuters reach Metrorail facilities with ease. The longest skywalk planned will be on the stretch going from Old High Court and Ashram Road towards Gujarati Sahitya Parishad Road. MEGA will connected north-south and east-west interchange elevated station with a skywalk. As a demand from the commuters these skywalks were planned. They are also planning to set up an escalator or lift so that commuters can get on the skywalk.The hurdle which had arised in land acquisition had been cleared. MEGA has cleared its first hurdle in land acquisition by settling a dispute with residents of Jivraj Park, whose houses and shops are to be removed to pave away for the metro project. Occupants of two housing colonies-Vishwakarma and Mangaldeep have agreed to vacate their land on MEGA’s proposal to pay around 42 crore to owners of 11 bungalows, three flats and six shops. North-South CorridorSome of the occupants asked for plot near Shreyas crossing while the rest asked for cash. They decided to pay 80% of the amount while entering into the agreement with the residents, and the remaining 20% was decided to be paid at the time of the award passed by the district collector. The High Court directed MEGA to deposit the remaining 20% amount with the district collector. There are multiple ownerships in many properties and hence they opted for the cash.