Bengulreans will be able to reach the city Kempegowda International Airport without disruption of the traffic snarls very soon. A recent statement from the Bangalore International Airport that operates the KIA says that the suburban rail connecting the airport is most likely to get ready by the end of this year.
New Arrangement To Help Hundreds Of Employees At Airport
It is expected that hundreds of workers who are employed at the airport will get relief from traffic snarls with the introduction of suburban rail services. These employees have to travel long distances and the cost of commuting is also very high. At present those who use public transport for reaching the airport from Bengaluru have to take cabs or shuttles from the BMTC airport that usually cost around Rs.150 from Hebbal to Rs.320 from Chandapura in Electronic City.
Cab rides taken directly from Bengaluru can cost Rs.900 plus. BIAL in its statement said that it is planning to utilize the existing railway line between Chikkaballapur-Yelahanka that passes through the airport’s north-west boundary for starting the initial round of services by coming up with a railway station.
The statement released by the airport management says, “BIAL intends to make use of this existing infrastructure by constructing a station that would cater to the travel needs of people. The proposed station will be a Halt Station with all basic passenger amenities.”
The statement further says, “The facility will be designed and built by BIAL and is expected to be operational by the end of 2019. BIAL is working closely with railway authorities on technical specifications of the station. From the station, passengers and visitors will be connected to different areas of the airport by a shuttle bus service that BIAL will operate.”
Further Upgradation With Suburban Rail System Being Planned
BIAL has stated that further up-gradation of the suburban rail system that caters to Bengaluru and its suburbs is under planning. A public transport policy expert, Sanjeev Dhyamanar said, “Overall if you consider the accessibility of the suburban rail link to the airport is much cheaper and faster, given it only needs an extension of 5 kilometers of tracks to reach the terminal.”
Sanjeev further said, “But this facility cannot cater to airport passengers singularly. The airport has been commissioned for more than a decade now and handles 25 million passengers in a year. It is high time for metro connectivity to the airport. The suburban rail, for now, will primarily help the airport workers, and cost-sensitive passengers who might choose to use it.”
The expert believes, “If a station inside the airport terminal can be readied in another four years, it will actually help passengers more. Gradually services from Baiyappanahalli, Whitefiled, and Yeshwantapur can be added. But the metro is also needed.”
It should be noted that the Center is yet to approve a route to the metro connectivity to the airport after the existing plan underwent a change.