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Line 1
Type Metro
System Mumbai Metro
Status Under final safety inspection
Locale Mumbai, Maharashtra, India
Termini Versova
Stations 12
Daily ridership 1.5 million (estimate)
Opening April 2014
Owner Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA)
Operator(s) Mumbai Metro One Pvt Ltd
Character Elevated
Depot(s) D.N. Nagar
Line length 11.40 km (7.08 mi)
Track gauge 1,435 mm (4 ft 8 12 in) standard gauge
Minimum radius 100 m
Electrification 25 kV, 50 Hz AC through overhead catenary
Operating speed 80 km/h (50 mph)
Route map
D.N. Nagar
Azad Nagar
Andheri Mumbai Suburban Railway Logo.svg 25 railtransportation.svg
Airport Road
Subhash Nagar
Ghatkopar Mumbai Suburban Railway Logo.svg

Line 1, also referred to as Metro I or the Versova-Andheri-Ghatkopar (VAG) corridor, of the Mumbai Metro is part of the metro system for the city of Mumbai, India. The 11.40 km line is fully elevated, and consists of 12 stations from Versova to Ghatkopar. The line connects the eastern and western suburbs of Mumbai.[1] It was built at an estimated cost of INR4321 crore (US$720 million) and is operated by the Mumbai Metro One Pvt Ltd (MMOPL).[2] The MMOPL is a joint venture company owned by Reliance Infrastructure, Veolia Transport and the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA).[3]

Line 1 is scheduled to begin operations in April 2014.



The Mumbai Suburban Railway connects Mumbai from north to south. However, east-west connectivity is poor. Line 1 provides east-west rail connectivity between the Eastern and Western suburbs of Mumbai.[4] It facilitates interchange between the Mumbai Suburban Railway and Mumbai Metro at Andheri and Ghatkopar stations. The line significantly reduces the journey time from Versova to Ghatkopar from 71 minutes to 21 minutes.[5] It also provides rail connectivity to the MIDC, SEEPZ and other commercial hubs.[6]


Contracts for Line 1[7]
Package Awarded to
Civil Works – Viaduct Simplex Infrastructure Ltd
Civil Works – Stations Sew Infrastructure Ltd
Civil Works – Special Bridges
Civil Works – Depot Earthworks Shyam Narayan & Bros
Rolling stock CSR Nanjing
Signalling System Siemens
Power Supply Traction & SCADA ABB
Communication System Thales
Trackwork VNC Rail One
Automatic Fare Collection Indra
Escalators Schindler
Lifts OTIS
Depot Machinery & Plant Awarded to various suppliers
Depot Civil Works Ahluwalia Contracts (India) Ltd.
Marol metro station under construction in Andheri in March 2012.
Asalfa metro station under construction in Ghatkopar.
Azad Nagar metro station under construction in Andheri in March 2012.
A metro train arriving at the DN Nagar station during the trial run in May 2013.
A metro train passing through Andheri during a trial run.

The contract for the Versova–Andheri–Ghatkopar corridor was secured by the Mumbai Metro One Pvt Ltd (MMOPL), a joint venture company owned by Reliance Infrastructure, Veolia Transport and the MMRDA. The MMOPL is a special purpose vehicle incorporated for the implementation of the Line 1 project. Reliance Infrastructure holds 69% of the equity share capital, while MMRDA holds 26% and remaining 5% is held by Veolia Transport.[8] MMOPL is the first public-private partnership initiative for a metro project in India.[9] The MMOPL board meets quarterly and roughly consists of two representatives of MMRDA, three or four from Reliance Infrastructure, and the principal secretary of the State Urban Development Department.[10] Simplex Infrastructure Ltd was the main technical contractor.[11] The foundation stone for the project was laid by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on 21 June 2006, and the work order for the same was issued on 21 January 2008,[12] but actual work on the corridor began only on 8 February 2008.[11] At the time of commencement of work, MMOPL stated that it aimed to complete the project in a record 30 months, although the concession agreement specified the period of construction to be five years.[6] In September 2011, MMOPL officials claimed that trial runs on the first section of the corridor, the 3-km Versova–D.N. Nagar–Azad Nagar stretch, would start by February 2012, with a view to opening the stretch to commuters by March or April 2012.[13] The deadline for completion of Line 1 has been shifted several times. The following months have all, at some point of time, been announced as the deadline for completion of the project - July and September 2010, July 2011, March and November 2012,[14][15] September 2013 (Phase 1: Versova to Airport Road) and December 2013 (Phase 2: Airport Road to Ghatkopar),[12][16] and 31 March 2014.[17]

MMOPL blamed the delay in construction on the MMRDA. RInfra officials stated that MMRDA had to acquire land along the route and provide "right of way" to MMOPL by December 2008.[18] Although it was supposed to have been given a 59% right of way with land free of encumbrances, MMOPL started work with right of way being made available only on 45% of the land.[6] As of August 2008, MMRDA had only freed up 20% of required land. The lack of maps of underground utilities made the task more difficult. As per the contract between MMOPL and MMRDA, the MMRDA was supposed to hand over complete right of way to MMOPL by mid-2008. MMOPL eventually received 100% of the land required for the project in December 2011. However, the minaret of a mosque near Andheri metro station and a portion of the roof of Maheshwar Temple near Asalfa station still needed to be demolished.[18] Both impediments were resolved in October 2012 and MMRDA finally obtained 100% right of way along the entire alignment of Line 1.[19]

By October 2011, the majority of the corridor's track-support pillars and girders had been laid, and the 12 individual stations were 70% complete, with most of the stations rising above platform level.[5] However, land acquisition and right-of-way issues, along with problems with the construction of a Metro-related viaduct, delayed the line's predicted completion to summer 2012.[5][20] In May 2012, the Indian Bank restructured the Mumbai Metro's INR1.08 billion (US$18 million) loan account, citing the project's land use problems.[21]

On 1 May 2013, a successful 2 km trial run from Versova to Azad Nagar stations was conducted on Line 1 in the presence of Maharashtra Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan,[22] who stated that the line would open to the public from September 2013.[23][24] However, MMRDA officials told Business Standard in August 2013 that the metro would be delayed further as it had not received approval from the Central Railway Safety Commissioner, and also did not complete various amenities, including lifts, staircases, canteen and seating arrangement for commuters.[25] The first major trial run on Line 1, began at 6:45pm IST on 3 June 2013 from Versova station, and covered the 7 km stretch to Airport station by 7:05pm, according to MMRDA additional commissioner S.V.R. Srinivas, who was on board the train. Trial runs had been conducted for the past month, the most notable being the trial run on 1 May 2013, that was officially flagged off by the Chief Minister.[22] However, trials prior to the June 3 trial, were restricted to the three kilometres between Versova and Azad Nagar stations on JP Road.[26]

Seven metro trains ran the full stretch of Line 1 on 6 December 2013 at high speed to conduct "system integration" checks. The trial run was the first time that several trains ran back-to-back on Line 1. The trains maintained a frequency of three to three-and-a-half minutes and achieved the precision timing of 21 minutes for the full run. MMOPL officials stated that the trial was conducted to check the speed and reliability of the trains, and also the working of the control systems, signals, energy-efficient lighting system, on-board passenger announcement system and train-to-control-room radio communication system. They also tested whether trains stopped properly at platforms and doors opened as desired. Several more tests will be conducted before the metro opens to the public.[4] According to the information given by the MMRDA to an RTI query filed by activist Anil Galgali, around 5% of the civil works of the line were still pending as of December 2013. The reply to the RTI query stated that Versova, DN Nagar, Azad Nagar, Chakala and Airport Road stations were 99% complete as on December 2013. Andheri, Saki Naka, Marol and Western Express Highway stations were in the range of 95-98%. Construction work at Ghatkopar was 90% complete, Asalfa and Jagruti Nagar stations were 80% and 85% complete respectively.[27]

The MMRDA sent a letter to RInfra on 31 December 2013, asking them to change the logo of the metro system from Reliance Metro to Mumbai Metro. The MMRDA insisted that the demand was within the concession agreement signed between the state government and RInfra, in which the fine print stated that the project should be titled the Mumbai Metro.[28][29] RInfra issued a press statement on 2 January 2014, blaming the MMRDA for having "failed to provide any guidance on this subject during the bidding stage and/or during the implementation stage."[30] RInfra claimed that the logo and brand name Reliance Metro had been finalised in July 2013 as the MMRDA had not responded to the designs and logos submitted. RInfra also stated that it was eligible to name the entire project after the company, as it held a majority stake in the project.[31] Republican Party of India (Athawale) workers protested the name Reliance Metro on 8 January 2014 by blackening boards with Reliance's logo at Chakala metro station. The RPI(A) demanded that metro be renamed as Mumbai Metro.[32][33][34] On 11 January, Shiv Sena MLA Subhash Desai sent a letter to Chief Minister Chavan opposing the Reliance Metro name, and expressing support for the name Mumbai Metro.[35][36] The Mumbai Metro name also received support from Maharashtra's Minority Development Department minister Arif Naseem Khan.[37][38][39][40] In February 2014, U.P.S. Madan, metropolitan commissioner of MMRDA, confirmed that RInfra had agreed to rename the project as Mumbai Metro from Reliance Metro.[31] However, even by April 2014, the "Reliance Metro" logos that had been stuck on trains and stations had not been removed. MMOPL officials stated that they had not yet received any new logo design, and were still awaiting the same.[41]

A 10-member team of the Research, Design and Standards Organisation (RDSO) began conducting oscillation trials along the entire 11.4-km stretch of Line 1 on 31 January 2014. The trials included study of train behaviour like acceleration and deceleration, suspension, emergency brake distance and track parameters, and adherence to safety and technical specifications.[42] Oscillation trials were conducted to test the track-worthiness of new or modified design of rolling stock. Emergency braking distance trials aim at testing the braking potential.[43] MMOPL stated that the trials were completed in a record time of 11 days, much ahead of the RDSO's scheduled time of 22 days.[43][44][45] After completing the tests, the RDSO had to submit it's report to the Chief Commissioner of Railway Safety, Lucknow for final certification, after which the MMOPL could approach the Commissioner of Metro Railway Safety (CMRS) for safety trials.[46] However, the submission of the report by the RDSO was delayed a public interest litigation (PIL) filed in the Bombay High Court on the height of Mumbai Suburban Railway station platforms. The RDSO had to divert its resources to inspect the suburban railway platforms, due to commuters falling into the gap between the platform and the trains.[47] The MMOPL was granted a "speed certificate" from the RDSO on 2 April.[48] MMRDA and MMOPL authorities jointly applied to the CMRS for safety certification on April 4.[41] Then CMRS P.S. Baghel began inspecting the line on 18 April, and completed it on 28 April. Baghel inspected the entire metro system including the rolling stock, workshops, depot, operation control centre, corridor, stations, tracks and overhead equipment.[49][50][51] Besides the inspection, must also obtain approval for the locomotives from the railway board.[52] The Congress-NCP government wanted to open the line by 24 April 2014, the voting day in Mumbai for the 2014 general elections, with Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan, who was also the MMRDA chairperson, especially keen on the date. Congress candidates Gurudas Kamat and Priya Dutt, and NCP candidate Sanjay Dina Patil also wanted the line to open then, so as to gain political mileage.[52] After receiving the CMRS' approval, the MMOPL approached the Ministry of Railways for declaring the line open for public carriage.[53][54]

On 6 February 2014, RInfra announced that construction of the metro line had been completed, along with signal testing and system integration. It also stated that it had already received approvals from relevant authorities including the fire department, and electrical inspector general.[55] However, the construction of approach roads to stations such as Jagruti Nagar and Asalfa Road had not been completed,[16] although this work was to be undertaken by the MMRDA, and not MMOPL.[16] Engineers used over 210 different designs to construct the pillars on the corridor.[56] The MMOPL along with the Mumbai Fire Brigade and the Mumbai Police jointly conducted a fire mock drill successfully at the Airport Road station on 14 March 2014. The purpose of the mock drill was to assess the preparedness of the three agencies in case of an emergency.[57][58][59] The drill was the last one conducted as part of a joint Central Disaster Management Plan, prepared through MCGM to take care of passengers and property in situation of eventuality.[60] During trials in mid-March 2014, the Mumbai Metro ran time-tabled trains at a headway of almost 4 minutes. The trials were a part of reliability, availability, maintainability and sustainability (RAMS) tests that are a part of any normal railway operations network.[61]

Even prior to the opening of the metro line, pedestrians, commuters and some media outlets expressed major concerns about the dispersal of pedestrian and vehicular traffic under the metro stations. This prompted the MMRDA to take up the development of Station Area Traffic Improvement Scheme (SATIS) throughout the route.[62] A key proposal of the SATIS was the integration of the metro rail system with the BEST. The BEST and the BMC jointly worked towards relocating existing bus stops. Dedicated bus stops were built, and BEST bus feeder routes were created along the metro corridor. These stops have indicators that flash timings of next metro train's arrival. Similarly, indicators were provided inside the metro coaches that flash information about BEST bus routes for onward journey from respective stations. The MMRDA widened the 1.8 m-2.5 m footpaths below metro stations by an additional 1.5 metres, and declared a 330 metre area around the stations as a "Metro-Influence-Zone" where illegal parking and hawking are prohibited. The Mumbai traffic police will ensure that there is no illegal parking around the station areas, and the Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai (MCGM) will prevent illegal hawking along the metro stations. Other steps taken under SATIS included provision of a uniform two-plus-two lane traffic that will be kept open at all times, dedicated two wheeler parking at all stations, and railings along the foot path to prevent jaywalking below metro stations.[62][63][64][65]


Eight accidents occurred during the construction of Line 1. The first occurred in May 2008 when 1 person was killed and another injured, when a pile rig collapsed at a construction site in Andheri (West). In 2009, 4 people were injured, when a steel reinforcement cage and temporary scaffolding of a concrete pillar caved in it Andheri (East). In April 2012, a crane at a construction site in Ghatkopar, veered off a truck and crashed on a portion of the nearby Sarvodaya Hospital. No one was injured as the affected portion of the hospital building was empty at the time.[66]

On 5 September 2012, a slab collapsed at the under-construction Subhash Nagar metro station in Andheri, killing one construction worker and injuring 16 people.[67] Following the incident, construction work on the metro was suspended. MMOPL fined the contractor, Hindustan Construction Company, INR10 lakh (equivalent to INR11 lakh or US$19,000 in 2014).[68] On 11 September 2012, MMOPL appointed Geneva-based SGS Consultants as independent safety consultants for the construction of Line 1. Construction resumed on 25 September 2012, under the supervision of SGS Consultants, after the consultant submitted its preliminary report to the MMOPL.[69] The consultant remained with the project until the completion of Line 1 to help prevent future accidents.[70] The accident was suspected to have been caused by weak temporary foundation to the under-construction slab and rain when the concrete was being mounted atop.[71]

Another report, prepared by an MMRDA appointed independent committee of IIT Bombay civil engineering professor K.V.K. Rao and S.B. Tamsekar former PWD chief engineer, revealed that the scaffolding gave way due to a cavity in the soil which had become loose due to heavy rain the previous day.[72] According to SVR Srinivas, then additional metropolitan commissioner at MMRDA, "The accident was basically due to voids in the support. The support weakened due to rain and utilities underneath created voids. So, it was basically due to loosening of the soil due to construction activity and its erosion due to heavy rain that the support weakened. If because of any reason a part of the support settles, stress increases on the staging and causes it to fail leading to a cascading effect". The committee recommended that the contractor ascertain stability of the sub-strata before beginning such activities. In case of instability, remedial measures must be taken to fix it before work can start. The report also reiterated that safety checklists should be enforced and construction workers strictly wear safety gear. The MMRDA stated that it would not be able to take action based on the report and that it's probe was done to understand exactly what had gone wrong, while the MMOPL inquiry was internal.[73]


The original estimated cost of constructing Line 1 was INR2356 crore (US$390 million). However, delays increased the cost by 84% over six years, and the project cost was INR4321 crore (US$720 million).[74][75] The information about the cost escalation was obtained under an RTI request on 20 August 2013 by activist Anil Galgali, which stated that the MMOPL board members, in a meeting held in May 2012, had approved a revised budget that cost around INR4321 crore (US$720 million). As per the cost sharing formula, the construction cost was funded according to a 70:30 debt equity ratio between the MMOPL and the MMRDA. However, the agreement signed between the Government of Maharashtra and MMOPL, also stated that the MMRDA would not have to share the escalated cost and its cost sharing formula would be the same even after the escalation. The entire escalation was borne by the MMOPL. The Asian Age reported that RInfra had funded almost 60% of the increased cost of INR1965 crore (US$330 million) through a loan, and the balance was raised through debt.[76]

To offset the escalation, RInfra-led MMOPL asked for a 130-150% hike in the metro fare structure, which the state government had fixed to be between INR9 and INR13.[77] An MMOPL spokesperson stated, "The principal reason for an increase is the inability of MMRDA to provide 100 per cent unencumbered RoW, which was contractually committed by MMRDA to be handed over to MMOPL on or before September 2007. So far, 100 per cent unencumbered RoW is yet to be handed over. The increase in fares is necessitated due to an increase in operating costs, owing to a steep increase in all economic indices; inflation, interest rate, foreign exchange, etc. These factors have also increased the estimated project cost." However, the MMRDA denied the request stating that the cost escalation of the project and the fare hike demand were separate issues. An MMRDA official told Business Standard, "There is no question of any fare hike right now, as the issue will be considered after the service is started by MMOPL. The rise in capital expenditure will not impact fares immediately."[78]

MMOPL signed loan agreements to raise debts totaling Rs 1,194 crore, and achieved the financial closure for Line 1 in October 2008. In a uniquely structured project financing model, MMOPL raised this debt from a group of banks led by IDBI, Corporation Bank, Karur Vyasa Bank, Canara Bank, Indian Bank and Oriental Bank of Commerce.[79] IDBI Bank contributed Rs 300 crore for the project, IIFCL UK contributed $ 70 million (around Rs 287 crore) as a foreign currency loan for the project, and the rest was contributed by the remaining banks.[80] As per the original project cost of Rs 2,356 crore, the project would have had a debt component of Rs 1,194 crore, while the equity would have been Rs 512 crore, and the MMRDA, the concessioning authority would provide a capital grant Rs 650 crore.[79] The cost of borrowing for the rupee component, which constituted about 75% of the total debt, was 12.25%, while the foreign currency loan was at 3.5% above LIBOR. The debt was raised amidst a tight global liquidity position, based on a unique funding model, where the only recourse available to the lenders is to the cash flow generated from the project instead of the project assets. According to then MMOPL Director K.P. Maheshwari, "The repayment model is also unique as for the first time the project's assets are not charged to the lender as security."[79]

The Union Government had committed viability gap funding (or the public sector's contribution in a public private partnership project), of INR471 crore, which amounted to 20% of the project's original cost of INR2,356 crore. The Union Government released only INR310.5 crore of its share as of June 2012. The final tranche of INR160 crore was approved for release only in February 2014. The amount had been pending since 2012. UPS Madan, metropolitan commissioner, MMRDA, stated that the delay was due to procedural issues, saying, "In February or March last year [2013], the UD [Urban Development] ministry had recommended the funds for disbursement to the Department of Economic Affairs. But it could not come up in the budget last year because they had some queries."[81]

The metro railway administration will pay charges equivalent of 99% of the market value of the land, plus nominal charges of INR1,000 per annum for a period of 35 years, extendable for a further 35-year period. Overhead crossing charges of INR50,000 per annum will be levied for the area of land, and INR100,000 per annum will be levied for each 100 metre stretch of crossing.[82]


There are 12 stations on Line 1. All stations have three levels - Road level, Concourse Level and Platform level. At least two sets of covered staircase and up/down escalators on both sides of roads on footpath leading to concourse level are provided at every station. Stations are fully accessible to physically challenged and elderly passengers through the provision of special lifts.[4] The Concourse level area is divided into non-paid area and paid areas. The non-paid area houses facilities like ticketing counters, ticket vending machines, gates for entry/exit and other facilities like retail outlets, ATMs, toilets etc. The paid area is only accessible for valid ticket holders and gives access to platforms.[4] Trains leave from the second floor which is the Platform level. There is a maximum gap of 85 mm between the platform and train doors.[83][84] Platforms have polycarbonate roofs which allow them to be naturally lit.[4]

All stations have public information display systems for info schedule of trains coming on platform. All signboards on Line 1 are in Marathi, English and Hindi. Baggage screening machines and door frame metal detectors are located at all entry points. All stations are connected through fibre optics for communication. There are 100 staircases (minimum 4 in each station), 45 elevators and 95 escalators on the 12 stations of Line 1.[4][85]

There are no parking facilities available on Line 1. The MMRDA stated that this was because there was no space available.[86] The Ghatkopar station is connected with the western side of the Ghatkopar railway station through a skywalk.[87]

All facilities of the Mumbai Metro including the stations, metro coaches and toilets, are disabled-friendly. A gradual ramp is provided from road level to the elevator podium below metro stations for use by disable, visually impaired or senior commuters. At the end of the ramp, overhead covers are present to protect against inclement weather. Elevators at stations are large enough to accommodate a wheel chair-bound commuters, and the elevator buttons have information in Braille apart from regular updates of operations by way of announcements.[88] Tactile paving/flooring has been provided from the elevators at the concourse to the ticket vending machines, and then till the edge of the platform to guide the visually impaired along the route. One of the AFC gates is wide enough to allow entry of people on wheelchairs. The ticket vending machines will also aid passengers with speech impairment and signage design, including pictograms with high contrast levels, which will help those with limited visual capacity and cognitive disabilities. The toilets are specially designed to accommodate wheelchairs and facilitate disabled persons. All coaches have designated space for wheelchairs, alongside the benches, and emergency intercom devices are also installed near the wheelchair space, at a lower height to enable the disabled to use the facility.[88]

Line 1
# Station Name Inter-station Distance (km) Connections
1 Versova 0 None
2 D.N. Nagar 0.955 Line 2
3 Azad Nagar 0.796 None
4 Andheri 1.36 Andheri railway station
(Western Line, Harbour Line, Indian Railways)
5 Western Express Highway 1.007 None
6 Chakala 1.264 None
7 Airport Road 0.725 None
8 Marol 0.598 Line 3
9 Saki Naka 1.075 None
10 Asalpha[89] 1.123 None
11 Jagruti Nagar 0.862 None
12 Ghatkopar 1.056 Ghatkopar railway station (Central Line)


Rolling stock[edit]

A Mumbai Metro train decorated with flowers, before the commencement of a trial run.
A metro train crossing the cable-stayed bridge over the Western Express Highway.

Six international firms - Siemens, Bombardier, Alstom, Rotem-Hyundai, Chunyun, and Nippon Sharyo were shortlisted to provide rolling stock for the line,[90] but CSR Nanjing was ultimately chosen to supply rolling stock.[91] CSR Nanjing was awarded a contract in May 2008 to supply 16 trains of 4 cars each for a total fee of INR6 billion (US$100.2 million). The design of the rakes is derived from the Chinese domestic Type A design, with the stainless steel body widened by 200 mm to increase capacity by 72 to 390 passengers. These trains were CSR's first 25 kV AC metro trains, and the first metro trains to be built in China for India. The first rake was shipped from Shanghai on 23 March 2010,[92] and the last rake arrived at Mumbai port by the end of February 2014.[47][93]

Line 1 was allotted 64 coaches,[94] which are used to operate 16 four-coach trains. All coaches are air-conditioned and have humidity control, and designed to reduce noise and vibration.[95] Each coach is approximately 2.9 metres (9.5 ft) wide[96] and has 48 seats. A coach has a capacity of 375 passengers, and a single four car train has a total capacity of 1500 passengers. The coach body is made of lightweight stainless steel, with fire resistant metal doors. Coaches have metallic silver colour exteriors, and can be covered with vinyl sheets to display advertisements. The interior features anti-skid floors, and longitudinal seats with dedicated space to accommodate wheelchairs. Coaches are also fitted with LED displays showing dynamic route map, and LCD TVs for entertainment, information and advertising. Windows in coaches are made of double glazed laminated glass to shut out noise. Each coach has 8 externally hung, sliding bi-parting doors except the pilot cabin which has only 2. Doors are broad to enable wheelchair access. The maximum gap between the station platform and the doors is 85 mm.[97] Trains are outfitted with a number of features for safety and convenience, including 3D route maps, first-aid kits, fire-fighting equipment and intercom systems permitting communication with the train driver. Each coach also contains a black box to assist in accident investigations.[5]


The ABB Group was awarded the contract for supplying power systems to Line 1 on 31 July 2008. ABB will be responsible for the supply, installation, testing and commissioning of traction electrification, power supply, power distribution and SCADA system for the first metro corridor.[98][99] A 30 metre neutral section has been provided between the Chakala and Airport Road stations to ensure uninterrupted power supply. This neutral section divides the entire overhead equipment section into two parts - one from Versova to the neutral section at Chakala station, and the other from Ghatkopar to the neutral section at Airport Road station - and makes them function independently. Power, at 25,000V, is fed from the D.N. Nagar and Marol receiving sub-stations (RSS) for the stretch from Versova to Chakala station, and Ghatkopar to Airport Road respectively. If one RSS fails, the neutral section can be switched on so that either of the substations can run the entire line. Diesel generator sets of 180KV capacity are provided at each station to run the essential load during power failure. Diesel generator sets of 1000KV at DN Nagar Depot work station will run the control rooms and the essential load during power failure. The centralised system will help the technical staff restore power supply as soon as possible[88]

The choice of 25KV alternating current (AC) power supply was criticized by MMRDA director (technical) S P Khade in an article in a railway industry magazine. Khade wrote that the current method of power supply could be dangerous for buildings close to the metro line and a hazard during the monsoon. He also warned that parting of overhead wires and other equipment could be dangerous for those on the road below, as they would hang down from the elevated corridor. He instead favoured 1,500V direct current (DC) power supply, which he claimed was used by 97% of metros around the world. He also argued land required for a DC substation would have been one-third of what is needed for an AC substation, and that DC trains were lighter, leading to higher pick-up speeds, lower power requirements and a lighter load on the elevated structure. Khade explained that he did not take up the issue as MMDRA director, because he claimed that the decision to use 25KV had been made before assumed the post.[100]

Signaling and communications[edit]

Line 1 features an advanced signaling system, including an automatic train protection system (ATPS) and automated signaling to control train movements.[101] Siemens supplied the signalling and train control systems required for the project,[98] while Thales Group supplied the communication systems. The network's signaling and train control systems will be based on LZB 700M technology.[99]


The Cable-stayed metro bridge over the Western Express Highway under construction in Andheri.
Construction of the metro bridge over the Western Express Highway.
Cable-stayed metro bridge over the Western Express Highway in Andheri.

Line 1 contains a 1284 metre steel bridge, modeled on the Howrah Bridge in Kolkata,[102] crossing the Western Line at Andheri. It is the first steel-and-concrete bridge over the Mumbai Suburban Railway. Construction of the bridge, which is supported by 3 pillars, started in early 2012 and completed on 23 December 2012. The metropolitan administration claims the bridge was built in 288 days which is a record. It cost INR350 million (equivalent to INR400 million or US$6.7 million in 2014). The bridge was constructed by Braithwaite Burn & Jessop Construction Company (BBJ), Kolkata. Interestingly, BBJ had also fabricated the Howrah Bridge. Due to restriction in working hours and non-availability of space, the steel girder had to be pre-fabricated at at BBJ's Heavy Plant Yard in Kolkata. It was designed such that it could be disassembled during transportation and reassembled at the site when all four columns of the bridge were ready. It took 6–7 days to transport it to Mumbai on a piecemeal basis. The bridge was initially supposed to be made of concrete but due to changes in plans, it was changed to a steel bridge. The bridge faced several challenges - the biggest being building a pillar in the middle of the tracks without restricting train traffic even for a day.[103]

Another notable bridge on Line 1, is the 175 metre long cable-stayed bridge over the Jogeshwari Flyover on the Western Express Highway. The bridge is the first and highest cable-stay bridge for a metro in Asia. It is also Mumbai's second cable-stayed bridge after the Bandra Worli Sea Link. The Jogeshwari flyover is 13 metres above ground level and the metro line travels at a height of 19.5 metres above ground level. The highest point of the bridge is 39 metres above ground level. Construction on the bridge started in mid-2009. It was expected to be completed by April 2010. Due to delays it was completed on 24 August 2012. The bridge was built by MMOPL with the help of Switzerland based, VSL International Ltd. The steel cables which hold and support the bridge are anchored to two Y-shaped pylons that weigh over 1000 tonnes.[104]

The contract for cable stay bridge over the Western Express Highway and two other cantilever bridges over Andheri and Mithi River were awarded to SEW Constructions Limited.[98]

Water Recycling Plant[edit]

MMOPL built a state-of-the-art waste water treatment plant at the Versova car shed where Line 1 trains are housed for repair and cleaning. The plant recycles water used to wash rakes. It has a capacity to recycle 5 lakh litres of water daily. The unit comprehensive waste water treatment plant will ensure that water used in operating the metro gets treated and pumped back into the system thereby achieving zero-waste discharge. The daily water requirement at the Versova car shed is 3 lac litres for domestic usage and another 0.5 lac litres for industrial as well as few additional requirements for other plants and equipments.[105]


Logo of MMOPL, the joint venture that operates Line 1.


A traffic study, undertaken by Metro One and a Hong-Kong-based traffic consultant MVA Systra in 2012, showed that in peak hours, 55,000 people were likely to travel per hour in one direction. The daily passenger count was estimated to be 1.5 million.[106]


Line 1 will use an Automatic Fare Collection System (AFC), with options for taking a smart card (for multiple journeys) or single journey tokens.[4] Line 1 is expected to have a three-tier fare structure based on journey distances:

  • INR9 – up to 3 km
  • INR11 – between 3 km and 8 km
  • INR13 – beyond 8 km

Fares will be fixed by the Government of Maharashtra through a notification.[107]

Frequency and operating hours[edit]

The headway of Line 1 is 3.5 minutes, going down to 3 minutes during peak hours. Station dwell time is 30 seconds.[4] Services will run on Line 1 for 18.5 hours everyday (5:30 AM till midnight).[4]


The MMOPL had sought approval from the Research, Design and Standards Organisation (RDSO) to operate trains at a maximum speed limit of 90 km/h under test conditions.[46] The RDSO permitted trains to operate at 80 km/hr on straight sections (subject to certain conditions), and 50 kmph at curves. In addition, metro trains will be permitted to operate at a maximum speed of 50 km/hr on the 300-metre radius between Sarvodaya and Ghatkopar. The maximum speed of 80 kmph would be allowed on straight stretches, only if a rail stress management system (RSMS) and a wheel impact load detection (WILD) system were installed. The RSMS system determines rail stress and temperature, so that flaws in rails due to wheel impact or temperature fluctuation due to whether conditions can be monitored and removed. WILD is a safety system that is used to identify wheels defects in wheels, that occur due to overload or defect in the suspension system, measuring its impact on the track, thereby avoiding derailments.. These standards were specified because the rails installed for the metro project are of European standards, and the government had not specified any uniform standards. MMOPL duly installed the systems, prior to the metro's opening.[108][109]

The RDSO had initially permitted a maximum speed of only 50 km/hr. The speed was reduced due to the steel tracks and supporting infrastructure. According to a railway official, "These tracks have been constructed based on European standards but we follow Indian Railway standards. The two have differences on several technical parameters, including the tolerance limit of tracks and even curves."[110] The slower speed would have added around 7 minutes to the journey time.[110] Another reason why trains on the line operate at slower speeds is because the average distance between two metro stations is about 800 meters to 1 km which prevent them from picking up speed.[110]

Trains operate at an average speed of 35 km/hr,[111] and cover the 11.40 km distance in 21 minutes.[4]


MMOPL announced on 13 December 2013 that Line 1 will have dedicated sniffer dogs and hand-held explosive detectors at every station, due to heightened security and constant terror threats in Mumbai. MMPOL claims that Line 1 will be the first metro line the world with sniffer dogs patrolling every station. The statement released by MMOPL stated, "Trained sniffer dogs will patrol each of the stations. There will be security guards in civilian dress who will intermingle with the public to check for any suspicious activity outside and inside the station premises." Apart from private security guards deployed by MMOPL, the State Government will also provide security for the metro from the Maharashtra State Security Corporation.[112]

Other security measures on Line 1 include Door Frame Metal Detectors, baggage screening machines,[113] random armed patrolling by Quick Response Team, guards, and designing stations in such a way that there is no hidden place where explosives can be kept. There are 700 real-time CCTV cameras installed at strategic locations on Line 1. Every passenger entering a station is frisked, and their baggage put through X-ray scanners.[112] All stations are fitted with fire alarm systems, fire safety devices and trains have fire resistant metal doors.[114]

Advertising and F&B[edit]

MMOPL possesses INR15 crore worth of media assets including static signs at the platform and concourse (both "high dwell time" places) wraps at the entry and exit gates, a connected digital network across all nine stations, branding on the backside of train passes/tickets, branding passage gates, and train wrap branding. Brands can also obtain station naming rights for a minimum period of 5 years. The rights will allow companies to display their name signage at the entry point and numerous exits, apart from branding across the station. The station can also be fully designed in the brand's trademark colours. Other advertising methods include public announcements in and outside the train, as well as on the MMOPL website. MMOPL will also allow for branding inside the trains by playing digital movies/upcoming movie trailers and TVCs in the train, similar to BEST buses in the city, but with more sophisticated technology.[115]

Times Innovative Media (TIM), a subsidiary of Bennett Coleman & Co that operates its out-of-home media business under the brand Times OOH, acquired the advertising rights for Line 1 in December 2013 for a period of 15 years.[116] The company offers advertising on 147 high definition digital screens (both inside and on the stations) and 375 static units at the 12 stations on the line, along with pillar wraps, train wraps, station corridors, train interiors, median junction advertising and naming rights for the stations.[117][118]

Times OOH published a newspaper advertisement on 4 April 2014 stating that it was e-auctioning the naming rights for 12 stations of Line 1. The advertising agency plans to mention the highest-bidder’s brand on the main signage at stations, in public announcements, on the main entry signage and route maps. While the names of the stations would remain essentially the same, these would be accompanied with a prefix of the highest-bidder’s brand name. However, the MMRDA Commissioner UPS Madan stated that the MMOPL had never discussed the move with the development authority, stating, “I was surprised to learn about it. It was never discussed with us directly or indirectly. We will take it up with them. They do have rights for commercial exploitation of station areas and can engage a third-party agency for it, but we had thought it would be just boards, hoardings and illumination. I am not sure if this is permissible.” The MMOPL insisted that the advertising would not violate provisions of the concession agreement. A company spokesperson stated, "There is no change in the name of the station. The prospective advertisers will use their brand name or appearance at various locations without violating any applicable provisions in the concession agreement".[119] If the e-auction is implemented, the Mumbai Metro will become the only the second metro system in the country, after Rapid MetroRail Gurgaon, to auction naming rights for its stations.[120]

Lite Bite Foods Pvt Ltd (LBF) was awarded the F&B concessions across all 12 stations on Line 1. Each of the stations are equipped with two food outlets, one of Street Foods of India and one of Baker's Street. Baker's Street serves a wide array of coffees, smoothies, shakes, cakes and confectioneries freshly baked at the premises. Street Foods of India offers tangy and crispy roadside Indian snacks. LBF supports these outlets from their 6400 sq ft commissary near the international airport.[121][122]


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