Mumbai: Gammon Infrastructure Projects Ltd, a subsidiary of Gammon India Ltd, has formed a consortium consisting of Siemens AG and Leighton Asia (Southern) Ltd to bid for a Rs3,800 crore, 18.7km high-speed direct metro rail connecting the international airport in Delhi with the Capital’s central business district, Connaught Place.
“The consortium in which Gammon Infrastructure will be the lead partner has submitted a bid to qualify for the project,” said a Gammon official who did not wish to be na-med. Leighton Asia (Southern) is part of Australia’slargest project development and contracting firm, the Leighton Group.
Five consortia are competing to build the airport link that will cut journey time to the city centre to 20 minutes from about an hour. The others in the fray include Bombardier and IL&FS, GE India and Larsen & Toubro, Reliance Energy and Construcciones Auxiliar de Ferrocarriles of Spain and YTL Corp. Berhad of Malaysia.
The Hyderabad-based GMR Group, which is upgrading and modernizing the Delhi airport, will chip in with a share of Rs350 crore for the project, said its associate vice-president (strategic finance) Kamalakara Rao Yechuri. The high-speed metro link is planned to be completed before Delhi hosts the Commonwealth Games in 2010.
The proposed high-speed metro line is expected to run from Connaught Place to the airport, stopping at Shivaji Terminal and Moti Bagh on the way. It is expected to carry a maximum of 2,000 passengers per hour in 2011 and 4,000 per hour in 2021.
Currently, the average travel time to the airport for passengers from Connaught Place is 40-50 minutes and it goes up to more than one hour during peak hours. The metro link is expected to cut the commutation time to Connaught Place by more than half, thus saving time.
Delhi Metro Rail Corp. (DMRC) had invited expressions of interest from firms to design, supply, install, commission and operate the rail link for 30 years.
The successful bidder will have to install all systems including rolling stock, overhead electrification, track, signalling and telecommunication, ventilation and air conditioning, automatic fare collection, baggage check-in and handling, depot and other facilities.
Gammon Infrastructure has also formed an exclusive alliance with Australia’s Macquarie Infrastructure Group, a top infrastructure acquisition, funding and management firm, to bid for the development, operation and management of the Chennai international airport.
This is the next expected privatization opportunity in the Indian airport sector and involves an estimated investment of $550-650 million (Rs2,255-2,665 crore).
According to an understanding reached between the two recently, Macquarie and Gammon will hold equal equity stakes in the project.
The consortium may also look to tie up with a leading airport operator, depending upon the qualification criteria set by the Indian government in the bid documents.