New Jalpaiguri revamp starts with 2025 deadline
The Northeast Frontier Railway has started work to upgrade infrastructure at New Jalpaiguri — the largest railway station in north Bengal and the second most important station in northeast India.
Last year, the railways announced that NJP was one of the 204 stations in the country to be upgraded with world-class features for enhanced passenger amenities.
“The work to upgrade the station has already started. Demolishing of the old structures, including the front retail areas and offices in the main station building, has been carried out. This is being done to get the site ready for civil construction works according to plan,” said an official of NFR.
According to him, the foundation work for the first arrival terminal is in progress while work for the second arrival terminal and the departure terminal will commence soon.
“For these, ticket counters have been already shifted to a new location near the rest house of railway electrification. In due course, as the work progresses, the existing parking areas, parcel and RMS (railway mail service) offices will also be shifted,” the official added.
The railways have said that Rs 334.72 crore would be spent on upgrading NJP.
The station, officials said, will have new facilities like a covered parking area, round-the-clock power backup, drinking water facility, an air-conditioned lobby, offices, shops, high-speed escalators and elevators, an air concourse, shops and hotels.
“The idea is to provide an airport-like feel and comfort to passengers. There will be complete segregation of arrival and departure areas. Once the station is ready, it can handle 70,000 passengers per day. We have set a target to finish the work by 2025,” said the official.
As of now, NJP can handle 36,000 passengers a day. Around 80 passenger trains move through the station every day, apart from goods trains.