By Dhaval Kulkarni www.dnaindia.com
Around nine years after it first drew up the master plan for the Metro railway project, the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) is planning to revise it and add new lines to the network, including one which will run parallel to the Western Express Highway.
A senior MMRDA official told DNA that they were planning to add a line parallel to the Western Express Highway from Bandra to Dahisar, to take some load off the suburban rail network and provide an alternative to vehicle users on the arterial road. “This line will be either elevated or underground. It will be integrated with the Colaba-Bandra-SEEPZ (Santa Cruz Electronics Export Processing Zone) line and will have a one stop changeover,” the official said.
According to the official, statistics revealed that a Bus Rapid Transit System (BRTS) would have a traffic demand of around 25,000 passengers per direction in peak hours. “However, the BRTS would be insufficient to meet this demand and hence a Metro is needed on the route,” he claimed.
The official said they were also planning a Metro railway line from Lokhandwala to SEEPZ and Kanjurmarg, to link the eastern and western suburbs. Earlier, the 13.14km route was to be taken up as part of the Mono railway master plan, but the MMRDA has decided to put the development of more Mono railway corridors on the backburner till the first 19.22-km Chembur-Wadala-Jacob Circle route, work on which is on, is commissioned and run. More info