According to ADB documents, the proposed investment will finance the first of three prioritized corridors of the planned regional rapid transit system (RRTS) network in India's National Capital Region (NCR). The Delhi-Meerut RRTS will pass through the densely populated sections of the NCR, connecting Delhi to Meerut in the state of Uttar Pradesh. The 82-kilometer corridor will provide safe, reliable, and high-capacity commuter transit services between various locations along the corridor. The investment project will finance rail track, signaling, station buildings, and maintenance facilities. It will also support capacity and institutional development of the National Capital Region Transport Corporation (NCRTC), a joint venture company of the Government of India and states of Delhi, Haryana, Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh, that is mandated to implement the RRTS project across the NCR. Tranche 2 will finance the second slice of the contract packages under the investment project.
PROJECT RATIONALE AND LINKAGE TO COUNTRY/REGIONAL STRATEGY
Plans for transport arteries to enhance regional connectivity have become critical for inclusive and sustainable development of the NCR. The NCR Regional Plan 2021 recommends integrating regional centers with each other and the capital through an integrated transport network to reduce pressure on Delhi and induce growth and development of settlements in NCR. The Functional Plan 2032 was then developed to detail out the specific polices of the Regional Plan related to the transport sector. The Functional Plan, approved by the NCR Planning Board in November 2009, recommended an integrated multi-modal transportation system for NCR to improve the mobility of both people and goods. The plan specifically includes a proposal for the construction of eight regional rapid transit system corridors, three of which are being prioritized for implementation, to connect Delhi to other cities in the NCR with high-speed commuter trains. Strengthening of urban mass transit systems and increasing environmental sustainability of cities through the development of railways is recognized in the country partnership strategy of ADB for India. The development of rail-based mass transit systems is governed by three main policies: National Urban Transport Policy (2006), National Transit Oriented Development Policy (2015), and Metro Rail Policy (2017).
Impact: Urban mobility in the National Capital Region improved.
Outcome: Efficiency, safety, social inclusiveness, and environmental sustainability of transport in the Delhi-Meerut regional rapid transit system (RRTS) corridor improved.
Outputs: (i) Delhi-Meerut RRTS corridor commissioned, (ii) Institutional capacity of the NCRTC strengthened, and (iii) Mobility and economic opportunities of women and differently abled improved
Implementation Arrangements: Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs and National Capital Region Transport Corporation will be the executing agencies.
Project Readiness: Readiness is high as the complete scope to be financed by the MFF has been appraised by ADB. Environmental and social due diligence have been completed for the entire corridor. The COVID-19 pandemic has not affected the project implementation arrangements or cost estimate. The project implementation period of 7 years provides adequate cushion for some delays. As instructed by the government, guidelines and standard operating procedures have been developed and are being strictly implemented for resumption of regular works at various NCRTC site offices and construction sites.
ENVIRONMENT AND SOCIAL IMPACTS
The proposed tranche 2 project is classified as environmental impact category A under ADB’s Safeguard Policy Statement (2009). The safeguard aspects of the project were fully appraised during the preparation of tranche 1 and there is no change in scope nor environmental issues under tranche 2. The safeguard documents disclosed on the ADB website remain in effect and do not require updates.Most of the alignment will be built along the center of an existing busy highway. Given the large scale of construction works involving the use of heavy equipment, health and safety risks are anticipated for the construction workers, existing road users, and residents living near the alignment. Other anticipated environmental issues include removal of trees; disturbance from construction-related noise and vibration; generation of large quantities of waste, including excavated material; risks of health and communicable diseases from large numbers of workers; and generation of dust, air, and water pollution.
The NCRTC has prepared an environmental assessment and review framework, and an environmental impact assessment (EIA), including an environmental management plan (EMP), in accordance with ADB’s Safeguard Policy Statement. The EIA was disclosed on 19 May 2020. In addition to the EMP, the contractors are also required to follow safety, health, and environmental guidelines for metro projects in India. Mitigation measures for all environmental risks identified for the project have been addressed through design measures and inclusion of appropriate actions in the EMP and the safety, health, and environmental guidelines. The NCRTC held consultations with key project stakeholders throughout EIA preparation and these will be continued during project implementation. A grievance redress mechanism is being implemented under the project to address complaints and grievances.
ADB approved the MFF in an aggregate principal amount of $1,552 million on 18 August 2020. This comprises: (i) $1,049 million from ADB's ordinary capital resources; (ii) $500 million from the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, partially administered by ADB; and (iii) $3 million grant from the Japan Fund for Poverty Reduction, fully administered by ADB. The Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, which will fund tranche 2 for $500 million, approved the loan on 29 October 2020.
Implementation of tranche 1 is on track. As of 20 October 2021, contracts awarded have totaled $491.8 million, and a total of $113.1 million has been disbursed out of the $500 million from tranche 1.
|Responsible ADB Officer||Saxena, Sharad|
|Responsible ADB Department||South Asia Department|
|Responsible ADB Division||Transport and Communications Division, SARD|
|Executing Agencies||Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs
Jaideep, Officer on Special Duty (Urban Transport)
Nirman Bhawan, Maulana Azad Road New Delhi 110 011 India</mailto:email@example.com<> National Capital Region Transport Corporation
Rajiv Datt, Senior Advisor, Resource Mobilization and Land Value Capture
7/6, Siri Fort Institutional Area August Kranti Marg, New Delhi - 110049</mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org<>
ACCESS TO INFORMATION
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ACCOUNTABILITY MECHANISM OF ADB
The Accountability Mechanism is an independent complaint mechanism and fact-finding body for people who believe they are likely to be, or have been, adversely affected by an Asian Development Bank-financed project. If you submit a complaint to the Accountability Mechanism, they may investigate to assess whether the Asian Development Bank is following its own policies and procedures for preventing harm to people or the environment. You can learn more about the Accountability Mechanism and how to file a complaint at: http://www.adb.org/site/accountability-mechanism/main.