Castlepines Global Equities – Japan Office President Takashi Kinoshita signing the partnership agreement.
From left: Castlepines Global Equities – Japan Office Sri Lanka Senior Advisor Ranil Francisco, High Speed Railway Corporation Chief Executive Officer Shohrab Salman, High Speed Railway Corporation Chairman Dr. P.R.I. Michael, Castlepines Global Equities Asia Pacific General Manager Dr. Ishizaki Bungo, Castlepines Global Equities – Japan Office President Takashi Kinoshita and Castlepines Global Equities – Japan Office Senior Advisor – Japan Udaya Athukorala
Proposed project to use MagLev line linking Negombo, BIA, Bopitiya, Ragama, Kettarama, Fort, Port City and Kollupitiya railway station
High Speed Railway Corporation Ltd. (HSRC) achieved a milestone recently when its equity partner Castlepines Global Equities – Japan Office (CGE) signed a mandate to partner in delivering Sri Lanka’s first high speed rail project.
Founding Chairman Dr. Parimalam Rajo Isa Michael was the prime mover in setting up this partnership with one of the world’s largest equity funding partners, Castlepines Global Equities. HSRC and CGE have jointly extended a mandate to the Korean Institute of Machinery & Materials (KIMM) which pioneered MagLev technology into an urbanised version that has been successfully implemented in Korea with efficiency and economic value for both the operator and passenger.
KIMM will be mandated to undertake the design, development and implementation of the technology in Sri Lanka, while also taking on the responsibility to train and technically equip local know-how for the future. This would be the first such instance in the entire Asian region.
CML-MTD Construction Ltd., which is part of MTD Walkers PLC of Sri Lanka and their global counterparts Alloy MTD (based in Malaysia), will be mandated to undertake the construction of the proposed Rail Project estimated to cost around $ 2 billion at this stage.
Ceylan Insurance Brokers Ltd. have been mandated as the insurance partners of the mega project. Ceylan Insurance Brokers Director Prasanna Abeyrathne has made a significant contribution in setting up the insurance partnership for the package and has assured his fullest commitment in supporting the project in its entirety.
The project has, over the years, evolved into what it is today and has had significant support from the Government of Sri Lanka to progress thus far. In particular, the Ministry of Megapolis, Ministry of Health, Ministry of Transport and Board of Investment of Sri Lanka have seen the immense benefits from a development and economic perspective, and therefore extended support to the journey of the High Speed Rail and Mixed Development project.
The proposed Mega Project constitutes a state-of-the-art railway line that will use Magnetic Levitation (MagLev) to cover Negombo, Katunayake (Bandaranaike International Airport – BIA), Bopitiya, Ragama, Kettarama International Cricket Stadium, Beira Lake (Colombo Fort), Port City and Colombo 3 (Kollupitiya) Railway Station. Within the stations/terminals proposed, individual development projects under the umbrella of ‘High Speed Rail and Mixed Development Mega Project’ will be undertaken as follows:
Negombo – Proposed upgrade to the existing Negombo town to cater to more dynamic economic growth as a part of the project.
BIA – Integrate the MagLev Terminal at the departure and arrival lounges of the International Airport to allow both foreign and local passengers the opportunity to commute efficiently and with minimal hassle and time.
Bopitiya – A new concept into township development which will cater to a minimum of 3,200 dwellings both isolated and structured with facilities and features such as modern amenities, car parks, fully-equipped sports complex, an 18-hole golf resort, water park, flora and fauna nature reserve theme park and many more facilities. Bopitiya is a land space that has a significant correlation to nature with its association to the heritage listed ‘Muthurajawela’ and as such has been carefully thought of in the planning and designing process to ensure a minimum of 60% of the natural resources retain its original value. Furthermore, the promoters of this project led by Dr. Michael has emphasised the importance of the nature preservation requirements to the consortium, which has unanimously consented to this decision and hence carefully taken into account the legislated environmental policies and guidelines in preparing for the project.
Ragama Health City – A 300-bed, fully-equipped hospital combined with state-of-the-art laboratories, lodging and reference library that is being designed to ensure that every medical need of Sri Lanka and the South Asian region as a whole can be made available at an attractive and competitive rate. The proposition not only gives the opportunity for the country to save potential foreign exchange expenditure of Sri Lankans travelling overseas for medical treatment, but also significantly encourage and attract medical tourism.
Kettarama International Stadium – The proposed terminal is expected to encourage and afford an opportunity to sports enthusiasts to directly access the line to catch up on cricket, Sri Lanka’s biggest sports passion. Beira Lake (Colombo Fort) – A 400-room, star-class hotel has been planned to ensure that the best of everything is made available to both business travellers and holiday-makers. The train terminal is proposed at this location as an ‘underground’ terminal which will allow passengers using the facility to alight at this destination and simply walk into the hotel. Furthermore, the proposed designs also afford the facility of Airport check-in at the hotel itself thereby giving the busy traveller the opportunity to optimise on time. Port City Terminal – The terminal has been primarily planned to ensure access to the proposed Financial Hub of Sri Lanka with the best and most convenient source of transport. While there is a primary disembarking point planned into the port city, a separate route of transport/access spanning 18 sub-terminals around the port city will ensure mobility and convenience to those visiting the Financial Hub.
Colombo 3 (Kollupitiya) Terminal – The final destination of phase I of this initiative intends to link the existing train lines with the MagLev terminal, and as such, an underground terminal has been proposed at the existing Colombo 3 Rail Station. Under this proposition, HSRC will implement at the cost of the project a complete revamp and upgrade of the terminal that will bring about transformation to experience with continuity of transportation options around the country. HSRC also plans to offer free travel up to Galle railway station for travellers and commuters who chose to use MagLev urban trains from Negombo to Colombo 3.
“This is a landmark event for myself and the country that I consider to be my motherland through my maternal heritage. It has been a journey that I have worked towards over the past decade. I take great pride in announcing this landmark signing event and look forward to the realisation of the project,” said High Speed Railway Corporation Ltd. Chairman Dr. P.R.I. Michael.
“While there are many opportunities within the Asian region to invest in growth, it was our personal decision to support Sri Lanka. This was among many other reasons to support a country that is so rich in youth workforces and its passion to succeed in the future. We certainly look forward to working with our partners in Sri Lanka, HSRC, in this journey,” said Castlepines Global Equities – Japan Office President Takashi Kinoshita.