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MMRDA starts homework to avoid delays in metro line 3

The development authority had a meeting with BMC to ensure better coordination and minimum delays in the CBZ project

In the midst of difficulties that have put the Charkop-Bandra-Mankhurd metro line 2 in the non-starter category, the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) seems to be working proactively for the Colaba-Bandra-Seepz (CBZ) line 3, to ensure that the work continues without any delays. They have started their homework on the route, which will be built underground; to ensure that issues like permission or rehabilitation of project-affected people does not push the deadline, or their budget.

The MMRDA is planning better coordination between the two agencies to ensure that they stick to their deadline and budget for metro line 3. File pic
The MMRDA is planning better coordination between the two agencies to ensure that they stick to their deadline and budget for metro line 3. File pic

Sanjay Sethi, Additional Metropolitan Commissioner, said, “We have presented the CBZ metro line plan to the BMC Commissioner and other officials on Thursday, and discussed various aspects of the project that has to be completed so that the implementation work is not delayed. The aim of this meeting was to ensure seamless coordination between the two agencies so that we don’t waste time in getting permissions when the actual work begins.”

The concerns of the MMRDA commissioner are warranted as many projects, including metro line 1, have been delayed in the past due to permissions, like right of way to the contractor was delayed by MMRDA as they approached the BMC late for the permission.

Similar delays also occurred during the construction of Milan Rail Over Bridge and Barfiwala Flyover in Andheri.With the line 3 project already estimated to cost Rs 24,000 crore, 56 per cent of which is taken as loan from Japan International Corporation Agency, MMRDA is keen to complete the project within budget.

Challenges ahead
The line 3 project is not without its unique set of challenges. Since the line will be completely underground, issues like shifting of underground utilities, gas and water pipelines has to be tackled. This poses as a concern for the development body as there are no blueprints of underground utilities available with them, and they are planning to discuss the same in detail with the BMC.

An MMRDA official, who was a part of the meeting, said, “We have explained the entire route to the civic body and they will provide us details of major pipelines and trees that have to be cut. We can then plan our strategy of how we’ll go about tackling the issue.”

Other issues like Resettlement and Rehabilitation (R&R) of people was also discussed during the meeting. The development authority will have to conduct the R&R of many families of the Chimatpada area in Andheri east from where the line 3 is expected to pass.

Current status
The tender process for underground civil work, like tunneling and underground station, is currently in process, with February 24 as the date for the submission of bids

About Line 3
Project Cost: Rs 23,136 crore
Loan from JICA: Rs 13,235 crore
Total stations: 26
The underground line will connect Colaba to Seepz, via BKC and the airport

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