Pod taxis to provide last-mile connectivity in GIFT City

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GANDHINAGAR : To provide last mile connectivity to employees and visitors in GIFT City, the government is working on a pilot project for operating pod taxis that will operate on elevated corridors and provide crucial connectivity between high-rise buildings and metro stations within the 1000-acre odd campus in Gujarat.

The Personal Rapid Transit (PRT) system will be the last mile connectivity between the metro rail and the offices in GIFT City. A proof of concept has been made where the project will be executed in a small portion and later scaled up. As part of the pilot project we will lay a couple of kilometers of tracks in the Special Economic Zone (SEZS) for operating pod taxis that will begin from the metro station in GIFT City. Consultants have also been appointed to conduct a feasibility study for the project,” a senior official of GIFT City told .

Italy-based M/s Rina Consulting and Ahmedabad-based M/s CASAD Consultants Pvt. Ltd. have been appointed as consultants for carrying out a detailed feasibility study for development of Personal Rapid Transit (PRT) System in GIFT City, sources added. The National Highway Logistics Management Ltd (NHLML) in early 2023 had floated a Request for Proposal (RFP) for carrying out a feasibility study for development of Personal Rapid System in GIFT City. NHLML is a 100 percent owned special purpose vehicle of National Highway Authority of India (NHAI).

“The pod taxis that will run on dedicated tracks,” the official added. The tracks have been proposed to be built on an elevated corridor over utility tunnels that cross GIFT City and connect all the high-rise buildings. The tentative length of the pilot project mentioned in the RFP floated by NHLML is about 4.6 kilometers.

The consultants will carry out benchmarking studies of different PRT systems across the world and compare them on key parameters related to the project topography, length etc. They will also assess various transportation options and technologies and standards available for development and operation of PRT systems. The consultants will also carry out detailed demand assessments, engineering surveys, detailed cost estimates, determine future demand potential and estimate the future passenger traffic projections for the next 30 years.

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