Mumbai metro rail on track

Mumbai metro rail on track : On the occasion of Maharashtra Day, Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan yesterday promised Mumbai residents that the state’s first metro train from Versova to Airport Road will be commissioned in September.

Flagging off the first trial run between Versova and Azad Nagar, a 3km stretch, Chavan complimented the efforts of workers, technicians, engineers and officials for the Mumbai Metro, labelled as one of the state’s showpiece infrastructure projects.

“They have brought the metro to your doorstep without stopping the daily routine or halting the highway traffic even for a single day,” Chavan said.

He said the next stretch on the Versova-Andheri-Ghatkopar Metro – from the Airport Road to Ghatkopar – will be commissioned in December.

Chavan said trials will continue for some more months as a prelude to securing certification from the railways’ safety commissioner for the project constructed by a consortium led by Reliance Infrastructure Ltd on behalf of Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA).

“It has been a challenging task, to say the least,” Chavan said.

The decades’ old and unmapped underground utilities, congested areas and never-ending traffic snarls were some of the hurdles overcome during the construction of the corridor.

The section is part of the 11.40km Versova-Ghatkopar corridor which will provide a vital east-west link and drastically reduce travel time from around 90 minutes now to barely 20 minutes.

About other projects, Chavan said that the complete underground Colaba-Bandra-SEEPZ Metro corridor and the under-consideration Ghatkopar-Thane Metro corridor, along with other mega projects were expected to be started this year.

“The MMRDA will inaugurate projects like mono rail, Eastern Express Freeway Project, the Sahar Elevated Road, Milan Rail Overbridge, Santacruz-Chembur Link Road and a flyover at Amar Mahal Junction in Chembur,” Chavan said.

In all, these projects would add another 24km of additional roadway to the city.

The Mumbai Metro’s first phase connecting Versova-Ghatkopar is being constructed at a cost of around Rs23bn.

This sector is an elevated corridor supported by columns at the road median and will enable connectivity of eastern-western suburbs to the Western Railway and Central Railway. The MMRDA plans to provide interchange facility within the two railway networks at Ghatkopar and Andheri.

This phase of the Mumbai Metro – a part of which is expected to be opened for public use by August – will cater to important commercial areas and surrounding business districts in the suburban areas.

Chavan said the tendering process of the Rs96bn Mumbai Trans Harbour Link, the country’s second sealink in Mumbai, is nearing completion and the construction work is expected to start this year.

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Source : Gulf-Times

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