Tehran Mayor Hanachi Promises Swift Progress in Metro Expansion
EghtesadOnline: After the official launch of two new stations in Tehran Metro’s Line 7 early this week, urban managers assured the citizens of swift progress in the expansion of Tehran subway network.
Speaking at the inauguration ceremony on Monday, Tehran Mayor Pirouz Hanachi said by the end of the current Iranian year (March 2020), a major part of the line will become operational, ISNA reported.
"Of the total 25 stations planned for Line 7, 16 will be delivering services to the public in six months," he said.
The newly inaugurated stations Basij and Mahdiyeh along Line 7's eastern flank came on stream late last week after the stations and the tunnel were successfully tested a week earlier to ensure its smooth operation. However, officials postponed its public announcement to several days later, according to Financial Tribune.
The 27-km Line 7, which connects the northwest to southeastern parts of Tehran, will have 25 stations. The two stations and the connecting tunnel account for 8.5 kilometers of the line.
As the western flank of the line was partially operational, the launch of the eastern section of Line 7 connected southeast to the northwest of the capital.
On inauguration day, four new trains made by domestic producers were also added to the line's operating trains.
The line's headway had reached 15 minutes, but it will shrink with the addition of the new trains.
Hanachi emphasized that Tehran Municipality and the government have had a hard time financing the capital’s huge subway project.
The incomplete lines 6 and 7 still needs funds, "however, the good news is that soon, the Plan and Budget Organization will inject 50 trillion rials [$444.4 million] into these projects", he added.
Hopefully, Hanachi said, there will be no worries about financial support.
Also speaking at the ceremony, Mohsen Hashemi, chairman of Tehran City Council, applauded the efforts of TM and Tehran Metro Group for the subway’s development and emphasized the necessity of localization.
"Domestic companies and manufacturers have a great potential to curb the country's dependence on foreign suppliers of subway cars, parts and equipment," he said.
Hashemi noted that manufacturing rail wagons, power supply network, air conditioning, communication network, signaling, elevators, escalators and ticketing systems should be completely localized by domestic companies.”
Line 7 Timeline
The first three stations of Line 7 were launched in March. Commuters were first able to take the subway from Helal Ahmar Station in downtown Tehran to Tarbiat Modares Station near Chamran and Jalal Al-e-Ahmad Expressway’s junction to Sanat Square in northwest Tehran.
Line 7 was partially opened in June 2017 by Tehran's former mayor, Mohammad Baqer Qalibaf, during his 2017 presidential election campaign. The line’s premature launch was strongly criticized by public transport experts and urban planners, because it disregarded safety rules and protocols.
Tehran Mayor Pirouz Hanachi now says all safety standards have been observed.
The capital’s subway network stretches over 220 kilometers and comprises seven lines (1 to 7) with nearly 120 stations. Line 6 and 7 are under construction.
On Tuesday, Mohammad Reza Mehmandar, Tehran's traffic police chief, unveiled several traffic surveillance cars and new vehicles for conducting roadside technical inspection tests.
Mehmandar explained that the surveillance cars will patrol the streets and identify vehicles with expired technical inspection labels or those missing the mandatory license.
Roadside test cars will randomly stop and test polluting vehicles.
"Those caught by the traffic police for lacking technical inspection labels will be fined and given 10 days to repair their vehicles and undergo the test," he added.
All two- and four-wheelers plying the streets of the capital need to have technical inspection labels as of November 2018, when the Air Pollution Reduction scheme was launched by TM.
APR is aimed at curbing the growing air pollution in the capital. Those found in breach will be fined.
Another move has been recently initiated in District 11, located in the central part of the capital.
Abdolmotaleb Tavajohi, an official at Tehran Municipality’s District 11, told the media that mechanized on-street parking spaces have been prepared for the large number of motorcycles in the central part of the capital.
"Due to the district’s proximity to Grand Bazaar and its chronic road traffic, the number of motorcycles in the area is staggering compared to the other parts of the city," he said.
“Drivers can park their vehicles in the lots for a fee, the amount of which varies, depending on their duration of stay.”
Tavajohi said the measure is hoped to curb the mess caused by two-wheelers and streamline their parking by setting up special parking spaces and signage.