Karachi Circular Railway KCR Network Revive Project Update: The Executive Committee of the National Economic Council (Ecnec) on Friday approved nine development projects at a cost of Rs311 billion, including the Karachi Circular Railway KCR Network Revive Project, which will be constructed under the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) framework.
ECNEC’s meeting was presided over by the Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi. An official said that after Karachi Circular Railway KCR Network Revive Project was decided to be made a part of CPEC in the 6th Join Coordination Committee meeting, Pakistani and Chinese authorities had decided to complete the project on a priority basis.
Earlier, Japanese development agency, Jica, was to finance the Karachi Circular Railway KCR Network Revive Project, which was scheduled to be completed in 10 years. However, under special directives of former prime minister Nawaz Sharif, it was decided that the Karachi Circular Railway KCR Network Revive Project would be included in CPEC and would be completed within three years by September 2020.
The Karachi Circular Railway KCR Network Revive Project includes the construction of 24 stations, procurement of 162 locomotives each with a capacity of 250 passengers.
The project is expected to serve the commuting needs of 515,000 passengers each day, and is projected to be completed in three years — towards the end of 2020. China will provide a major portion of the financing required for the project. The locomotives will run at an average speed of 45-50 km per hour, and the projected ridership is expected to increase to 750,000 by the year 2030, per day and 915,000 by 2040.
The route of the proposed KCR will be constructed along the existing (abandoned) track which runs through the heart of Karachi’s various densely populated areas such as Shah Faisal Colony, COD, Gulistan-i-Jauhar, NIPA, Gulshan-i-Iqbal, Federal B Area, Manghopir, SITE, Baldia, Orangi, Wazir Mansion, and Chanesar.
The project undertaken by government of Sindh and China, while ministry of planning would oversee the matter.