23 July 2018

Interaction- Nitesh Gangaramani, Director, Al Fara'a Group

Al Fara’a’s vision is to be the clients’ first choice in turnkey solutions

Al Fara'a Infraprojects part of the Al Fara’a Group (UAE) started its operations in India in 2011. The company has delivered over 18 projects with a total value of around Rs.2500 crores in the last 7 years and has 9 ongoing projects across Karnataka, Delhi and Maharshtra. Al Fara'a Infraprojects (India) entered into a strategic partnership with construction major Hindustan Construction Company Ltd. to participate in the construction of METRO projects in Maharashtra. NITESH GANGARAMANI, DIRECTOR, AL FARA'A GROUP spoke to CONSTRUCTION OPPORTUNITIES on his company’s contribution to metro projects and future plans.

 

 

Give us an update on the metro rail projects your company is currently involved in, their current status, scope of work and cost, timeline for completion?

Al Fara'a Infraprojects is currently executing two packages of Pune Metro (Corridor I & Corridor II) worth Rs.980.00 Crore, Consisting a total of 17 Elevated Metro Stations. Corridor I involves 9 elevated stations (Range Hill, Khadki, Bopodi, Dapodi, Phugewadi, Kasarwadi, Bhosari,Tukaram Nagar & PCMC) and Corridor II Involves 8 elevated stations (Vanaz, Anand Nagar, Ideal Colony, NalStop, Garware College, Deccan, Sambhaji Park & PMC)

 

 

Going forward what are the opportunities you are seeking in the metro space?

The Government of India has been very active on promoting and developing the Rapid Transit Systems (METRO) in majority of the emerging Smart Cities of India, the benefits of METRO are plenty as this public transport system is an efficient user of space with reduced level of air and noise pollution. Al Fara'a Infraprojects is keen on participating in the upcoming metros in Mumbai, Pune, Delhi, Bangalore, Kochi, Kanpur and Lucknow. This platform will help us augment our existence in the Infrastructure sector.

 

 

Please details us regards to the challenges faced and how you have overcome them in metro rail construction.

Construction of Elevated Metro Stations is completely a different arena, while execution we have faced below challenges right from initialization of the project.

Utility Identification and Shifting: We have conducted detailed GPS survey to identify and mark different types of live utilities such as Municipal Gas Line, Water Line, Sewers, Electricity & Telephone Lines running below the ground level, the core challenge is to complete the tasks with the help of heavy equipment, within stipulated time that too without damaging any of the utilities.

Traffic Management & General Safety: It has always been challenging to work safely in live traffic zones, one has to plan the day today activities considering, traffic density, availability of alternate roads, diversions, peak traffic hours in order to reduce the disturbance to the local traffic. We have deployed clear instructions, indicators, barricading boards and experienced Marshals to tackle the traffic issues. Regarding safety we have implemented systems taking care of fire, electrical, social and other hazardous issues at site and ensure project completion without any injuries to workers or pedestrians.

 

 

What are the key differences between metros in other countries compared to India?

Countries aboard have been planned meticulously as far as their urban development is concerned, this itself is a great respite for issues like Traffic Management, Logistics at site and   space constraints at execution stage. In India we too have well planned towns and cities primarily Tier II and Tier III but our major metro cities still face the challenges which execution of such projects.

 

 

Future outlook for the industry and from a company perspective.

As the population of our city grows, share of public transport, whether road or rail based, will increase. Experience has shown that, in tier II cities where roads do not have adequate width and which cater to mixed traffic conditions comprising slow and fast moving vehicles, road transport can optimally carry 8,000 persons per hour per direction (PHPDT). When traffic density increases beyond this level, average speed of vehicles comes down, journey time increases, air pollution goes up and commuters are put to increased level, of inconvenience. Thus when on a corridor, traffic density during peak hours crosses this figure, provision of rail-based mass transport, i.e. METRO system should be considered. The Government of India has collaborated with various State Governments develop the Rapid Transit Systems in all the major cities across the country which has led to growth in the infrastructure sector and provide opportunities for Infrastructure Companies.

 

 

ABOUT ALFARA’A INFRAPROJECTS

Al Fara’a Group founded in 1980 in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) is one of the top notch construction groups delivering world class turnkey solutions, employing over 11,000 employees across its operations in United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Qatar and India.

Al Fara'a Infraprojects started its operations in India in 2011, to execute construction projects in the Residential (Townships and High-rise Towers), Commercial (IT Parks, SEZ, Retail and Multiplexes), Healthcare, Hospitality, Infrastructure, Education and Institutional Sectors on EPC basis including Civil, MEP Works, HVAC, Fire Fighting, Interiors, BMS, Interior Works, External Development works etc. With a strength of 1200 employees,

Al Fara'a Infraprojects (India) delivers world-class engineering and construction services in the Indian Infrastructure Industry. Al Fara'a Infraprojects (India) started its progression in Mumbai and Bangalore with offering turnkey execution services to esteemed clients like DIL Ltd, TATA Housing Development Company Ltd, Lodha Group, JP Infra, Prestige Estates Projects Ltd., Mantri Developers, DNR Corp for developing their Commercial and Residential projects. Following the Governments initiatives to improve the countries’ infrastructure and the investment thrust gained in the Infrastructure Sector from FDIRs.s like ADB, JICA, KFW and The World Bank, Al Fara'a Infraprojects (India) decided to venture into the Infrastructure Sector, with competitive bidding and leveraging on it’s international experience and were able to break through it’s first Infrastructure project in 2016 for the Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust to build their Special Economic Zone - Phase 1 at Uran, Navi Mumbai on an EPC Format. Post which the company has been successful in attaining a prestigious contract for developing a Commercial cum Guest House Project, i.e Gujarat Bhavan for Government of Gujarat, invited by the NBCC India Ltd at New Delhi.

In order to capitalise the infrastructure boom, Al Fara'a Infraprojects (India) entered into a strategic partnership with construction major Hindustan Construction Company Ltd. to participate in the construction of METRO projects in Maharashtra.

This Joint Venture between HCC and Al Fara'a emerged as successful bidders for constructing 9 elevated stations on Pune Metro’s 10.795 km Corridor -1 between PimpriChinchwad Municipal Corporation (PCMC) to Range Hill for Maharashtra Metro Rail Corporation Limited (MahaMetro).Subsequently the same Joint Venture between HCC and Al Fara'a has also been awarded the contract for constructing 8 elevated stations on Pune Metro’s 8.584 km Corridor - 2 between Vanaz to Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) for Maharashtra Metro Rail Corporation Limited (MahaMetro) on the basis of competitive bidding.




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