Lucknow Metro - The Fastest Built Metro Rail Project

Lucknow Metro has achieved the distinction of becoming the fastest built metro rail project in the country - both in terms of completion of construction work and execution.

Lucknow Metro Map
On 25th November 2013, LMRCL (now UPMRCL) was incorporated as a Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) under the Companies Act, 1956. While the construction of Phase-IA i.e. North-South Corridor’s Priority Section (Transport Nagar to Charbagh) was completed ahead of schedule, the balance section of the North-South corridor was also completed in a record time.

The construction of ‘Priority Section’ of phase-IA started on 27th September 2014 was completed in a record time of less than 3 years and the first trial runs were conducted on 01/12/2016. Metro train operations on this Priority Section, which was developed on an 8.5 km stretch, was flagged off on 05th September 2017. The balance section had 13 stations in which 9 were elevated and the remaining 4 were in the underground section.

The construction work for the balance section comprising 10.94 km of elevated and 3.45 km underground network (Chaudhary Charan Singh Airport to Munshipulia Metro Station) started on 20th October 2016 and was completed on 23rd February 2019, way ahead of the deadline set in April 2019.The complete stretch of the North-South corridor from CCS Airport to Munshipulia was inaugurated by the Hon’ble Prime Minister on 8th March 2019.
Shri. Kumar Keshav, MD, Uttar Pradesh Metro Rail Corporation Limited
The Lucknow Metro has achieved the distinction of being the fastest-ever executed metro project in the country, as the entire project has been completed in just four and half years. Other contemporary Metro projects in the country have not been able to match up with the speed of deliverance as shown by UPMRCL’s strength in project execution. The Lucknow Metro is indeed the pride of the city.

Shri. Kumar Keshav, MD, Uttar Pradesh Metro Rail Corporation Limited

Planning & Execution
With detailed planning and execution strategies, the project was completed in a record time of 4.5 years, the fastest in the country. Efficient project management has been the prime reason for the success of the project. Regular monitoring and stringent follow-ups ensured that every aspect of the construction activity was carried out with perfection. The project received unwavering support from the central and state governments. This has been a significant reason for the success of Lucknow Metro.

Taking a cue from the availability of traffic-free roads at night, it was decided that the majority of the on-site construction and erection would take place in the after-hours. This had a positive impact on the speed at which the work was completed.

Utility identification proved to be a challenge. The entire city had already been utilized for civic infrastructure facilities. The old city area had a high water level which created difficulties in underground construction. The roads in those areas were congested and traffic management became a core issue. Traffic diversion was a challenge because substitute routes were needed to ease the problems. The UPMRC team had to widen some footpaths, remove electrical poles, cables & also shift some water pipelines and sewer lines. With efficient management, it was ensured that the public did not face any trouble.
  • During the construction phase of underground section, 4.5 lakh tonnes of mud was removed to make tunnels. A total number of 2321 piles were erected during the construction phase which included 541 pile caps as well.
  • 21 different types and sizes of steel spans were constructed in this project like 60 m steel span (near Nishatganj flyover) and 45 m steel spans (one beside Hotel Clark Awadh and four in Indira Nagar, in proximity to HAL). Apart from this, the 541 piers, 262 pier caps and 39 cantilever pier caps were also erected successfully.
  • The most remarkable achievement was the erection of curved U-girders near IT intersection for the first time by Lucknow Metro Project team.
  • The erection of I-girders near the polytechnic intersection was also difficult due to traffic congestion in the area.
  • A total number of 634 U-girders were erected on the elevated stretch of the North-South corridor from KD Singh Stadium to Munshi Pulia. These U-girders are 27 m long and 4.1 m wide, weighing around 150 tonnes.
The major challenges like erection of 225 m long balanced cantilever span at Mawaiya railway crossing with operational Indian railways lines beneath, erection of 60 m special steel span at Awadh rotary, 177 m long balanced cantilever bridge on Gomti river and another 60 m special steel span at Nishatganj (constructed in just 5 days), were overcome by strategic planning and careful execution by the dedicated team of engineers under the fine leadership of Managing Director Shri Kumar Keshav.

UPMRCL worked in a dedicated and planned manner. They issued multiple contracts to avoid delay. Contractors were monitored effectively and provided assistance to help with the delivery of the work on time and as per budget. Most of the contracts were divided among various companies so that timely delivery of work could be ensured. The corporation ensured timely payments to the vendors to keep them motivated.

Despite the pace at which the construction took place, UPMRC ensured to keep the city’s values, ethnicity, culture, and environment intact. The same was achieved by adopting a blend of construction methodologies as per the geological profile of different areas to avoid making changes to the landscape. Pre-cast twin U-Girders, Underground stations constructed through Cut and Cover Methodology, Bridges erected by Push launching technology and balanced cantilever bridges stand tall as a fine example of this strategic mix.

UPMRC also made sure that the green cover of the city remains intact and more and more green practices were adopted during the construction phase. Around 410 trees were transplanted (pulled along with the roots and relocated elsewhere) and altered the route map’s design at certain places to save over 500 trees. UPMRC also took steps towards waste reduction and use of renewable resources (Solar panels installed at Transport Nagar).

To keep the city’s roads clean, a wheel washing plant was installed at construction sites and every loading-unloading vehicle that moved out of the construction site was made to pass through the wheel washing plant. Only after the dirt-packed wheels were washed and cleansed off the construction mud, the vehicles moved outside the construction site onto the city roads.

During the construction phase of Lucknow Metro, weekly media briefings were conducted at its administration office every Wednesday. The Managing Director along with the directors updated media on the development of the week and plans for the next week. This regular update left no space for speculations. Media queries were regularly answered and this proved helpful in avoiding the situation of crisis or misinformation amidst the public.

All important information, progress updates, challenges, milestones, success and achievements were strategically communicated to the media which helped UPMRC to gain trust and ensured public support through positive image building and news coverage. Public confidence was gradually built by instilling a sense of ownership towards their own Lucknow Metro.

Various awareness and stakeholders engagement activities were performed and partnerships were created with RWAs, Traders associations, NGOs and other stakeholders to engage in dialogue and seek solutions to any problem that arose. This ensured no roadblocks from people and associations.
60 Metrespecial Steelspan
Lucknow Metro - The Fastest Built Metro Rail Project

At Awadh Rotary, Lucknow Metro has launched a 60-meter special steel span bridge crossing the rotary over a statue in the middle of the rotary. This bridge which has been built at a height of approximately 13 meters above the ground connects both the ends of the Metro viaduct to provide a special seamless connectivity for Metro train operations.

The decision to erect a steel span was taken so that the statue beneath wasn’t affected and the beauty of the intersection wasn’t compromised. What’s interesting is that not a single day’s traffic was interrupted during this span’s erection.

First U Girder Erection in Between K.D. Singh Babu Stadium – Munshi Pulia Elevated Stretch
Lucknow Metro - The Fastest Built Metro Rail Project

27 metre long and 4.1 metre wide U-girder weighing around 150 tonnes was lifted through two cranes of 400 tonnes and 350 tonnes to fix over the viaduct.

Special Balanced Cantilever Span
Lucknow Metro - The Fastest Built Metro Rail Project

A special balanced cantilever span of 255 meters (central span 105 meters; end spans of 75 meters each) was one of the most challenging and critical tasks which was erected at a height of 21.5 meters above the ground level while passing over 12 functional Indian railway tracks at a height of 15.2 meters under extremely difficult situations. The task was completed without affecting Indian railways train operations beneath, even for a single day. It is one of the rarest feats achieved for any Metro project in the country.

Diaphragm Wall
Lucknow Metro - The Fastest Built Metro Rail Project

A total number of 130,120,122 diaphragm walls were installed in Hussainganj, Sachivalaya and Hazaratganj Metro Station. These walls were constructed in panels to a depth of about 22 meter using construction machinery like Hydraulic rig with inbuilt control mechanism and cranes. It also helps in safe and speedy construction work of the underground section.

Lucknow Metro - The Fastest Built Metro Rail Project

Lucknow Metro - The Fastest Built Metro Rail Project

Lucknow Metro - The Fastest Built Metro Rail Project

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