Sunday, November 9, 2008

Pimpri-Chinchwad Municipal Corporation to take a loan of Rs 350 crore from the Asian Development Bank to start a Bus Rapid Transit System service

Rs 1,300 crore for 6 Routes:

Speaking to media persons on Wednesday, municipal commissioner Ashish Sharma said the Pimpri-Chinchwad Municipal Corporation PCMC has received a letter from the Asian Development Bank (ADB) expressing its willingness to provide the loan for the Bus Rapid Transit System (BRTS) project.

Sharma said, "The PCMC plans to start the BRTS service on six routes in the township at a total cost of around Rs 1,300 crore. The ADB will extend a loan to cover 25 per cent of the project cost, which comes up to Rs 350 - 400 crore."

Repayment in 15 years:

Explaining the reason for taking the loan, the civic chief said, "Normally, bank loans have to be repaid in seven to eight years. But the ADB's loans can be repaid in 15 years. Further, the PCMC has an AA+ credit rating, which means that we can get bank loans easily."

Social and Environmental impact:

"We will be working out details of the loan amount and the terms and conditions in two weeks. The ADB has appointed a consultant to assess the social and environmental impact of the project, which is expected to be ready in three months. The loan agreement with the ADB will be signed after that," Sharma further said.

Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission scheme:

The municipal commissioner explained that the PCMC will seek 60 per cent of the project cost from the union government under the Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission scheme. The civic body will bear the remaining 15 per cent of the expenditure, Sharma stated.

Urban Mass Transit Company Limited:

Sharma said the PCMC will appoint Urban Mass Transit Company Limited to prepare the operational plan for its BRTS project, as had also been done by the PMC.

Reacting to the opposition, Sharma said, "We have taken enough precautions and followed the technical experts' recommendations ensure that the BRTS buses run on the lanes between the concretised portion of the old Pune-Mumbai highway and the service road."

He also reiterated that 42 bus shelters and 15 toilets will be constructed along the old Pune-Mumbai highway on a public-private partnership (PPP) basis.
-The Times of India

Related Stories:

1) Bus Rapid Transit System project approved in Pimpri-Chinchwad Municipal Corporation under Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission

2) Footpath? My foot!

3) Sunita Narain: Buses and Barack Obama

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