BE2C2 Report — Test drilling has begun for India’s first undersea bullet train corridor with expected construction start date in 2018.
The 7 kilometer undersea corridor will help cut travel time between Mumbai and Hyderabad from seven to just two hours. This would mean a businessman could travel from one city to the other and back again in a day. It would also lasso both urban centers for families who would want to go to Bollywood or concerts or to go shopping in India’s financial capital said to be have one of the fastest growing consumer economy.
On Sunday, ground was broken to obtain soil and rock strata samples. “Soil and rocks below 70-meter-deep in the sea are being tested as part of the geotechnical and geophysical investigation for the entire project – to know if the site can support the structure,” a senior Railway Ministry official told media outlets.
Once built, India’s first bullet train is expected to travel at speeds up to 350km per hour (217 miles an hour). The undersea rail link will ease ground rail, road and air traffic between the two largest cities of the country.
Officials said by year 2023 the ambitious project could be completed, if all testings are cleared and the construction begins on time.
The train will be in a tubular encasement, saving money on land acquisition, though some sections of the railway will run underground.
The entire endeavor is estimated to cost upwards of $15 billion, with 80 percent of funding coming from the Sam Group which operates the Shinkansen bullet train between Tokyo and Osaka. Indian government and Japan’s JICA signed related agreement in December.
Japan has agreed to provide soft loan for the project.