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India transit system architects selected

Lee Harris Pomeroy Architects (LHPA), renowned for its innovative design of New York City subway stations, is about to apply its expertise to the oldest and busiest transit system in India, the Kolkata Metro Rail System. As part of a consortium that includes AECOM-Maunsell (UK), EGIS (France), YEC (Japan), and CES (India), LHPA (with SGI in India) has been selected to design the new East-West Metro Railway in Kolkata (formerly Calcutta). The new East-West Corridor of the Kolkata Metro will span 13.7 kilometers and include a tunnel under the Hoogly River. LHPA will be responsible for the design of six underground stations.

The project is part of a comprehensive initiative by the governments of India and West Bengal to modernize and expand its transportation system. When completed, it will link suburban residential areas of Salt Lake and Howrah to the central business district. The new metro will connect with major rail terminals in Howrah and Sealdah, as well as an existing North-South metro line. Ferries, buses, surface rail and taxis will also be accessible to the line. It will accommodate an estimated 480,000 passengers daily when fully completed in 2014.

Preliminary design and procurement for the project is expected to take one year. It will be constructed under competitively bid design/build contracts, with a construction value of more than $1 billion. The scope of work includes the first train tunnel to be built under a river in India. It will span one half mile and be100 feet deep.

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