PM Hasina opens Agargaon to Motijheel section of metro rail
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Saturday inaugurated the much-anticipated metro rail service from Agargaon to Motijheel, the city`s commercial district. Sheikh Hasina traveled to Motijheel from metro rail`s Agargaon station to mark the operation of this section. This extends the country`s first-ever metro rail`s service from its starting point at Uttara to Motijheel. The Uttara to Agargaon section of the metro was opened by the premier on December 28. Initially, metro rail on Agargaon-Motijheel section will be operated for four hours with three stations at Farmgate, Secretariat and Motijheel. Rest of the stations will be opened in phases, according to the Dhaka Mass Transit Company Limited (DMTCL) officials. Also on Saturday, Sheikh Hasina inaugurated the construction work of the MRT Northern route. Commuters can travel from Agargaon to Motijheel between 7:30am and 11:30am from Sunday. There are seven stations on the Agargaon to Motijheel part of Dhaka Metro Rail. These are: Bijoy Sarani, Farmgate, Karwan Bazar, Shahbagh, TSC, Secretariat/Press Club and Motijheel. Once the Agargaon-Motijheel part of Metro Rail opens, commuters will be able to travel from Uttara to Motijheel in just 38 minutes — a wonder by Dhaka standards. Initially, five trains will run from Agargaon to Motijheel every 15 minutes and the number of trains will be increased gradually by reducing the time interval. The cost of the country’s first ever metro rail project stands at Tk33,472 crore. The Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) provided Tk19,719 crore in the form of a loan to support the project, while the Government of Bangladesh funded the remaining amount. In the beginning, the estimated cost of this project was about Tk21,000 crore. The cost has increased due to the construction of an additional 1.6 km section from Motijheel to Kamalapur, acquisition of new land for each station, and the addition of various new facilities. The main construction work of the project started in 2017.