First air conditioned local by June next year

An article in DNA today says:

The new deadline for the city’s first air-conditioned local train, to run on the Western Railway (WR), has now been set for June 30, 2014. The train was announced in the railway budget for the current financial year.
According to WR officials, the delay was caused by the time taken to select a new design for the rake and because technical gaps related to the electrical systems that will power the train had to be plugged. The train’s power system will be provided by Bharat Heavy Electricals Limited’s Bhopal plant.
Speaking to dna, Pankaj Kumar, chief mechanical engineer, Integral Coach Factory (ICF), Chennai, said, “This train will have a completely new design in the history of Indian Railways. It will be a 12-coach rake, broad gauge, as wide as the locals running in Mumbai and will be completely vestibuled. The furnishings will be state-of-the-art and different from those in the trains running in the city at present.”

Source of news

I am eagerly waiting to see what its fare structure would be like. Expect some more delays too. End of 2014 would be a more realistic date to expect the rake in service. The quality of the rake, obviously, will be nothing to write home about as it is manufactured by our dearest Integral Coach Factory. Nevertheless, a welcome move to have AC locals. It will do nothing to ease the crowds in the trains, but might just take a few cars off the congested roads! BRTS, though would be much more helpful to de-congest roads, but that is for another post, some other time.

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3 thoughts on “First air conditioned local by June next year

  1. Dear All,

    Was there ever a demand raised for AC locals in Bombay?
    I suspect the ICF and Railway engineers NEED these projects more than the commuters to stay relevant. Just like the needless Elevated Rail corridor between Churchgate and Virar!

    One major factor of traffic transportation especially in a dense network is UNIFORMITY of vehicles. The AC rake will unnecessarily (i) add to the Rake type (ii) add to the Class / Fare / Service type. With the WR already having it’s hands full managing the multiple Cross-over points, etc this addition will only deteriorate services further.

    The WR would do well to pay attention on bettering average transit times, better aeration in trains and punctuality. That’s all. I have personally observed at Dadar that when trains arrive and depart regularly every 3 minutes the Rush is manageable even during peak hours. Monkeying around with various types of Services, Cross over points, etc leads to bunching which leads to Commuters collecting on platforms causing crush loads.

    Also instead of the elevated Corridor, the Railways can dramatically improve the Carrying capacity OR Throughput of the track sections by (i) running the Fast and Slow lines adjacent to each other in a direction. This can be made possible by advanced signalling systems that accommodate this issue. A major advantage would be seamless cross – over from Slow to Fast and vice versa. OR (ii) at the Cross over points ready Rail over Rail bridges with appropriate signalling adjustments – certainly a much much less costly and straight forward implementation than the Elevated Corridor. Eg Bandra (Harbour) to Khar WR.

    THE POINT I AM TRYING TO MAKE IS that the Railways don’t need to run AC services to lure Car travellers. The pathetic roads of Mumbai and its now increasingly erratic and indisciplined traffic would cause most long distance (+20 Kms) to switch to Railways if only aeration, better average transit time and punctuality are taken care of. CONVERSELY if the AC service causes further disruption and disturbs and already disturbed and deteriorated flow of Trains it may cause a few First Class commuters to opt out for Cars instead.

    Regards,
    Rajeev Parashar

  2. Is there a plan to convert entire local fleet to AC? If that is the case, cars would be certainly off the streets. What would be the base fares to travel these Local AC?

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