MMHB at Kamlapur: Japanese co makes progress in planning
The potential Japanese investor, working on developing a multimodal transportation hub (MMHB) at Kamlapur station in the city, has made some progress in initial planning after three years of efforts.
Sources said the Kajima Corporation sought commitments from the authorities concerned before starting to work with the master plan.
It also requested the authorities to sign a framework agreement to ensure coordination during the study and design stages - for smooth construction of the billion-dollar infrastructure on 256 acres of land.
"The investor was selected during the Japan-Bangladesh joint platform meeting in 2019. Since then, it has been solving major barriers in taking forward the conceptual design. Now it wants to proceed with cooperation from all the stakeholders," said an official engaged in the project formulation.
On Thursday, the Kajima Corporation also shared its plans with all the stakeholders, including the Ministry of Railways, Bangladesh Railway (BR), Dhaka Mass Transit Company Limited (DMTCL), Bangladesh Bridge Authority (BBA), and Rajdhani Unnayan Kartripakhya (RAJUK).
Officials said the stakeholders' meeting was organised to seek cooperation for finalising the MMTH's master plan - to be formulated soon by accommodating the BR's own building design.
To develop the MMTH, the BR's Kamlapur rail-station will be moved to eastern side, and the inland container depot (ICD) of the station will be shifted to other place, they added.
An official said there would be three types of buildings - connected through underground and one floor of the multi-storied building - keeping scopes for people to enter in the MMTH area from all sides.
The BR also has its own master plan for the Kamlapur station, as it will take a long time to develop new rail-tracks and buildings phase by phase.
The MMTH will be developed in at least three phases, he added.
The BR has been planning to turn its 256 acres of land at Kamlapur into a MMTH under public private partnership (PPP) initiative - to accommodate rail, bus and other road infrastructure, including that of high-speed train.
During the Japan-Bangladesh joint platform meeting in 2019, the BR's concept was accepted, and the Kajima Corporation was selected to work on the project.
The conceptual proposal was accepted by the Public Private Partnership Authority (PPP) and the BR on the same year.
However, the project faced many problems since its approval. Many government agencies planned to tag their transport-related projects - like Mass Rapid Transit (MRT) line-6 and line-1, and Dhaka Elevated Expressway (DEE) - with the Kamlapur station without informing the BR.
Later, the problems were solved after forming a professional technical team (PTT).
The Prime Minister's Office, PPPA, Ministry of Railways, BR, RAJUK, Dhaka Transport Coordination Authority, Dhaka South City Corporation, and Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology (BUET) were made the PTT members from the government side, while the DMTCL, BRTC and BBA were made observers.
The Kajima Corporation, Oriental Consultant Group and Nippon Koei were also in the PTT from the Japanese side.
Sources said the project is yet to get transaction advisor to conduct study from the government side. But the Japanese investor worked on the conceptual proposal, resolving problems related with constructing two metro-rail stations, Dhaka Elevated Expressway, etc.