Metro Move

Sept 25, 2010 (LBO) – A rail-based metro system may be an option in part of Sri Lanka’s capital city Colombo when passenger flows rise to levels that make it financially viable, an official said. There must be high density development in the city centre that will justify a rail-based metro system and it must go hand-in-hand with land use development, which means there is a need to set up a metropolitan for Colombo to ensure integrated planning of land use and transport.

“If not it will not resolve the problem,” said Jayaweera.

An underground metro or elevated system is not possible considering the high water table, Colombo being close to the sea, and high cost.

The current ridership market within the Colombo Metropolitan Area has generated only one main corridor which can be considered for a mass rapid transit system, from Peliyagoda, north of the city to Dematagoda in its centre.

“The traffic forecast passengers per one hour in one direction threshold of 35,000 is exceeded only in the Peliyagoda to Dematagoda link at the moment,” Jayaweera said.

All other links are below the threshold for now, although they may increase given accelerating economic growth and development