Sunday, September 12, 2010

On and Around the Delhi Metro: Blue Line - Anand Vihar section

Exploring the short Anand Vihar section of Delhi Metro's Blue Line in east Delhi highlights two interesting points that are commonly noted about the metro system in general: 1) The connection between the metro system and increased commercialization of place, and 2) that the metro is changing people's understanding of distances between locations in the city. More on both points follow.

The same photos are also on flickr.

Yamuna Bank

This is the interchange station between the Noida and Anand Vihar sections of the blue line. Situated on the floodplain of the river Yamuna, it's a bit isolated and distant from the closest formal habitation. Embankments protects the station (and it's adjoining metro depot) from the river when in spate.

Yamuna Bank station to the left and the intersection of Vikas Marg and Link Road to the right

Trains from both Noida and Anand Vihar lines approaching the station

Blue line and Link Road heading towards Noida

Lakshmi Nagar

Approaching Lakshmi Nagar station

Foot-over-bridges connecting the station to different sides of the road intersection

Station and road intersection

Station and surroundings

Nirman Vihar

Approaching Nirman Vihar station

Nirman Vihar station with the Lakshmi Nagar Commercial Complex and V3S Mall adjoining

This is the station/area that made me realize how conceptions of distance are changing because of the metro. I've only driven by the Lakshmi Nagar Commerial Complex a few times, and that too not for many years now, but to me it seemed really far and a long drive away. With the metro, it's now just a few stops away from the heart of Delhi, and with the expanding system over the years will become easily accessible from all parts of the city.

Similarly, with the opening of the Gurgaon metro line, a trip to/from Gurgaon already seems like a much less daunting task. Access to different parts of the city will, both conceptually and literally, become much easier, and just as in cities like London and New York, any particular location will be just a metro ride away.

Preet Vihar

Preet Vihar station and adjoining commercial complex

Formerly residential area around the station turning commercial

From these photographs, the nexus between commercialization of neighborhoods and the metro is quite evident. Metro stations were from the beginning planned close to commercial areas, and the areas around many stations are becoming increasingly commercialized, whether they were so before or not. At this Preet Vihar station, buildings that were clearly residential are changing in their nature, and new construction is also much more commercial.

The story through much of Delhi is the same, and the expectation is that the areas around metro stations will become hubs of commercial activity, with residential areas a little distance away. Increased commercialization of the locations around metro stations has always been one of the strategies for revenue generation by the metro, and it seems to be succeeding. This will likely be one of the main ways that metro will alter the built landscape of Delhi in the short to medium term.

Anand Vihar

This terminal (for now) metro station interchanges with the Anand Vihar ISBT (Inter State Bus Terminal) and Indian Railways station.

Anand Vihar metro station ...

... close to the ISBT

... as well as the railway station

Friday, September 03, 2010

On and Around the Delhi Metro: Green Line

I thought I'd finish exploring and photographing Delhi Metro's existing lines before the (entire, for Phase 2) Yellow and Violet lines open, but of course this post goes out on the day the yellow line extension becomes operational! In any case, here are photos from the far flung (at least from where I live) Green Line, which turns out to be a very interesting line to visit.

Heading almost due west on Rohtak Road like an outstretched tentacle out of "inner" Delhi, the green line reaches Mundka via Nangloi. After it crosses the Outer Ring Road, the scenery seems to progressively change from that of Delhi to that of small-town Haryana, and the road becomes lined with rows of small concrete-box shops with their steel shutters up, or small-scale industrial buildings. By the time the metro crosses Nangloi, we could easily be passing through a small town in Haryana rather than Delhi.

I guess Delhi the idea (in all it's craziness and multifariousness) still has to reach many parts of Delhi the state! This statement is surprising even to me, because there is so much of "not-Delhi" even in the heart of Delhi, and yet places like Mundka do not feel like other parts of the city. I guess what this means is that places like Mundka have not had even a touch of Delhi brought to them yet, even though they are well within Delhi state.

Here's a link to the images below at my green line flickr set. Clicking on the images here enlarges them for full effect.


Currently the green line starts at the Inderlok station, where it interchanges with the Red Line at it's eastern-most point.

Panoramas of Inderlok station, with it's mall to the left. Green line platforms are to the right

The green line side of Inderlok station

Soon after leaving Inderlok station, the green line passes uncomfortably close to houses at Tulsi Nagar

Note the barrier on the metro line at the point nearest to the buildings

Shivaji Park

Paschim Vihar West

Metro station alongside residences

Metro station as visible from the nearby residential colony


Metro line crossing the outer ring road at Peeragarhi

Udyog Vihar

Surajmal Stadium

Rohtak Road below metro line at Surajmal Stadium station

Looking towards Surajmal Stadium station from Nangloi


Nangloi station and flyover

Buildings demolished for the metro line at Nangloi

This image is a composite of two photographs so the perspective is a bit askew, but it shows the metro line and an inside street

Looking towards Nangloi RS metro station from Nangloi

Rajdhani Park

This is where things really begin to look like Haryana!


Mundka station - the current terminal station for the green line. Haryana continues all around the metro station/line!

A metro pillar almost trampling a sweets shop

Mundka station panoramas from the parking lot

Rohtak Road under Mundka station

Demolished buildings adjacent to Mundka station