The futuristic and revolutionary Pod Taxis are all set to debut in Gurgaon – adding yet another feather in the cap of this Millennium City.
Although the concept of Pod Taxis was discussed many times in the past, but the project never saw light of the day. Many states including Delhi, Haryana and Punjab had mooted the idea, but finally Gurgaon became the lucky city to begin this privilege in India.
What is a Pod Taxi?
Pod cars are small automated taxis suspended from an overhead network about 10 meters above ground. These driverless cars are considered ideal for densely populated areas as they need little space for building pillars.
Each pod taxi is meant to seat five passengers and can run upto speed of 60 kmph. Once a passenger gets into the pod, he can select the destination using either a touch panel or other electronic controls. Rides can take place from any stop directly to the destination selected without a break in journey.
Where will the service be launched?
Initially, the Government has planned to build Pod PRT (Personal Rapid Transit) system from Ambience Mall (Near the Delhi border) to Badshahpur Mode at Sohna Road in Gurgaon. For the pilot route of 13 kilometers, 16 docking stations will be built. Once this route becomes operational, it will be extended, as well as new routes will be added.
What will be the cost incurred?
In contrast to other rapid transport systems the Pod PRT system costs the least. While the Metro costs Rs 300 Crore per kilometer and Monorail costs Rs 170 Crore for a kilometer, pod taxi network can be built for just Rs 60 Crore per kilometer.
Moreover, the entire investment will be made by the private company that sets up the PRT. Under the terms of the agreement, the company will recover its investment in 25 years through sales of tickets.
When will Pod Taxis be operational?
The land required for the PRT system is available with the Government and no clearances are required from the forest and environmental ministries. The Government has shortlisted companies and is in the process of inviting global bids. After the contract is awarded to the best bidder, the Pod PRT project will be on stream within the next one year.
Besides streamlining last mile connectivity, the Pod PRT system will surely prove to be a catalyst in further development of the city as well as give the much needed boost to the stagnant real estate market of Gurgaon.
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