Much-awaited Orange Line Metro Train goes for test run in Lahore
LAHORE – In a positive development, the first train under the mass-transit project Orange Line Metro Train (OLMT) has hit the rails for the trial run on Tuesday afternoon.
Provincial Minister of Punjab for Transport Jahanzaib Khan Khichi and Provincial Minister of Punjab for Information and Culture Fayyaz ul Hassan Chohan are experiencing the maiden ride of the train powered with high-voltage electricity.
The maximum speed of the train is 80 km/h, but the train will run at an average speed of 34.8 km/h.
The Orange Line is an automated rapid transit system in Punjab’s capital Lahore. The line will span 27.1 km (16.8 mi) with 25.4 km (15.8 mi) elevated and 1.72 km (1.1 mi) underground. Out of the total 26 substations, 24 are elevated and two are located underground.
The line is expected to handle about 200,000 passengers daily, and they will be able to cover the 27 kilometers within just 45 minutes.
On May 16, 2018, former Punjab chief minister Shehbaz Sharif inaugurated the Orange Train test service from Islam Park Station to Lakshmi Chowk Station through a diesel-powered locomotive engine.
Though it is frequently mentioned as a part of the wider China Pakistan Economic Corridor, the Orange line was financed by the Government of Punjab.
According to PC-1, the project was expected to be completed within 27 months, but the Lahore High Court’s (LHC) stay order, slow work, and staggering increase in the cost delayed the project’s inauguration.
The project was initiated with a signed memorandum of understanding between the governments of Pakistan and China in May 2014. Financing for the project was secured in December 2015 when China’s Exim Bank agreed to provide a soft loan of $1.55 billion for the project. Construction works on the project began in October 2015.