|Native name||لاہور میٹرو|
|Transit type||Rapid transit|
|Operation will start||2050|
|System length||27.1 km (16.84 mi)|
|Track gauge||1,435 mm (4 ft 8 1⁄2 in)|
The Lahore Metro or Lahore Rapid Mass Transit System (LRMTS) (Urdu: لاہور میٹرو) was formerly a light rail system, and is now a rapid transit system, designed for Lahore, the second largest city of Pakistan. First proposed in 1991, funding was not secured, and in 2012 it was abandoned by the Punjab government in favour of the more cost–effective Lahore Metro Bus System which opened in February 2013.
The Punjab Government has decided to restart development on the Lahore Metro as a $1.6 billion project with Chinese assistance. The Orange Line (Lahore Metro), which will be 27.1-kilometre (16.8 mi) long (25.4 kilometres (15.8 mi) of which will be elevated), will be the first line of the project and is in the planning stages.
In 2005, the Transport Department of Pakistan revisited the project and carried out a feasibility study and in 2007, the Asian Development Bank provided PKR1 billion to conduct a study on the project. An 82 km (51 mi) long rail network with 60 stations was to be constructed in four separate phases as a part of the project. The first phase involved construction of a 27 km (17 mi) km railway line called green line which would include an 11.6 km (7.2 mi) underground network. This line would carry 250,000–300,000 passengers after construction. The construction was expected to start in 2008 and complete in 2010. However, the new Pakistani government in 2008, shifted its priorities to other projects.
In June 2010, Malaysia based Scomi International proposed a US$1.15 billion monorail–based alternative to LRMTS. However, the project was not approved as the Chinese government agreed to loan the LRMTS US$1.8 billion. The infrastructural investment required in LRMTS was US$61.9 million per km which was higher than the average range of US$13–50 million per km for similar projects.
Original design plan
As a part of the original project, four separate tracks were to be constructed in different operational phases.
The Green Line was expected to cost US$2.4 billion to construct and would have extend from Shahdara to Hamza Town. The total length of Green Line was expected to be 27 km (17 mi), with 11.6 km (7.2 mi) underground and 15.4 km (9.6 mi) overhead. There would be in total 12 underground stations and 10 overhead stations built. The route of green line was changed slightly. Instead of going to the Regal Chowk, the route was designed to pass through Lyton road and then join Lake road in the previously proposed route.
The original plan for the Orange Line was expected to cost US$1.9 billion to construct and would have extended from Ali Town to Dera Gujran. The total length of Orange Line was expected to be 27 kilometres (17 mi) (as it is in the revived metro plan), but with 7 kilometres (4.3 mi) of that underground and 20 kilometres (12 mi) of that elevated. The original project called for 6 underground stations and 20 elevated stations to be built.
The Blue Line was expected to be 24 kilometres (15 mi) in length and would have extended from Chauburji to College Road.
The Purple Line would have joined the Green line, at Data Darbar and the Orange Line, at Lakshami, to the Allama Iqbal International Airport.
In 2014, development on the Lahore Metro was revived by the Punjab Government as a $1.6 billion rapid transit project to be built with Chinese assistance. The 27.1-kilometre (16.8 mi) Orange Line (Lahore Metro) will be constructed first. This will be the first train mass rapid transit system in Pakistan.
Chinese government is entrusted for designing, construction and operation of the orange line. Construction of orange line is expected to start in November 2014 and the estimated completion time is 27 months. The governments of Pakistan and China in May 2014 signed an agreement to start an Orange Line Metro Train project.Chief Minister Punjab Shahbaz Sharif signed the agreement from Pakistan side at a ceremony which was also witnessed by President Mamnoon Hussain and Chinese President Xi Jinping. The project will cost $1.6 billion.
The Orange Line (Lahore Metro) will be 27.1-kilometre (16.8 mi) long, of which 25.4 kilometres (15.8 mi) will be elevated. The service will initially projected benefit around 250,000 passengers a day. The capacity will be increased to 500,000 passengers a day by 2025. Shahbaz Sharif on the occasion said like the Metro Bus Service, the metro train would also be run in other cities after Lahore.
Major areas that will be covered by Orange Line:
- Thokar Niaz Baig
- Multan Road
- The Mall
- Lakshmi Chowk
- Railway Station
- Garhi Shahu
- GT Road
- Pakistan Mint
- Dera Gujjaran
- "$1.6bn Lahore metro train deal signed with China". Dawn.com. 23 May 2014. Retrieved 2014-11-23.
- Asian Development Bank 2008, p. 2.
- The Express Tribune 2011.
- Asian Development Bank 2008, p. 3.
- Asian Development Bank 2009.
- Morichi 2013, pp. 129–130.
- Daily Times 2011.
- Asian Development Bank 2008, p. iv.
- "Proposed Technical Assistance Loan", Asian Development Bank Projects (Asian Development Bank), retrieved 18 January 2013
- "Lapse of Validity of Loan Approval", Asian Development Bank Documents (Asian Development Bank), retrieved 18 January 2013
- Punjab project: Lahore rapid transit scheme being revived, The Express Tribune, retrieved 18 January 2013
- LRMT fares for 2011, Daily Times, retrieved 18 January 2013
- Morichi, Shigeru (2013), Transport Development in Asian Megacities, Springer, ISBN 978-3-642-29743-4
- Mughal, Owais (2007-08-20). "Lahore Rapid Mass Transit Rail Project". All Things Pakistan.
- "Lahore mass transit system". DAWN (Pakistan). 2007-07-12.