The National High Speed Rail Corporation Limited (NHSRCL), responsible for developing the bullet train project in the country, signed a contract agreement with infrastructure conglomerate Larsen & Toubro (L&T) for the design and construction of the 237 km long viaduct between Vapi (Zaroli village at Maharashtra-Gujarat border) and Vadodara (Gujarat). This agreement for the implementation of the high-speed rail corridor is said to be the country’s biggest infrastructure contract for construction and design. The contract involves a significant 47 per cent of the high speed rail alignment, which includes the construction of four stations and a depot.
As part of this contract, the work involves 14 river crossings, six railway crossings including one mountain tunnel of 350 metres, 42 road crossings as well as the construction of four stations – Billimora, Vapi, Bharuch, and Surat. The 508 km long Mumbai-Ahmedabad bullet train project is funded by the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA). The rolling stock of the bullet train is being developed on the lines of Japanese E5 Shinkansen technology. Satoshi Suzuki, Ambassador of Japan to India attended the contract agreement signing ceremony on Thursday, November 26.
According to NHSRCL, the duration for the completion of the work a part of this agreement is four years from the date of commencement of the contract. The technical bids for this tender were opened on September 23, 2020. L&T emerged as the lowest bidder in the auction of the project. In less than one month, the financial bids were opened on October 19 after the final evaluation of technical bids. The organization further issued the letter of acceptance (LoA) to L&T for the contract.