Navi Mumbai Metro's first girders to come up
Work on setting up the 60-m girders will start after November 6 at Belapur; the much-delayed Metro is expected to be operational from May 2017
The Navi Mumbai Metro has overcome one of the major hurdles in its path. CIDCO will commence girder launching of the Metro from next month. The long pending work of girder launching at Belapur, above the busy Sion-Panvel highway, will start soon, sources revealed.
The girders for the Navi Mumbai Metro will be placed on this pillar erected at Belapur
Two girders measuring 60 metres in length each will be placed on the pillars. As a result, one lane of the busy highway on both ends will be closed near the construction site.
Vehicular movement will be affected at the end of the CBD Belapur flyover as the stretch witnesses heavy traffic flow throughout the day. CIDCO will start work on placing the two girders, weighing more than 300 tonnes each, by next month and the work will be done in two phases.
The Metro starting from Belapur will pass over the Sion-Panvel highway and work on this stretch was incomplete due to pending permission from the traffic department. The two girders will now be placed on a pillar that is positioned in the middle of the highway opposite Konkan Bhavan in Belapur.
“As the traffic flow is heavy on this stretch, we will first start installation of girders over the traffic going towards Pune. Some support system would be required to put the girders in place, as a result of which one lane of the highway will be occupied. However, we will ensure that vehicle movement is least affected at the construction site,” said a senior official from CIDCO.
The work is likely to commence after November 6, when repair work of the Belapur flyover is completed. Once the first girder is placed, work on the second, which passes over the highway on traffic going towards Mumbai will commence. Installing a single girder will take at least 70-80 days, officials added.
Project cost escalation
Over the years, from the time the project’s foundation stone was laid in 2011, the project cost of the Navi Mumbai Metro has also escalated tremendously. From Rs 1,985 crore in 2010, the cost went up to Rs 2,111 crore over the years due to technical difficulties and now has finally reached around Rs 3,000 crore.
Further, the project missed its original deadline of December 2014, which was further extended to January 2016 due to several technical delays like change in the Metro coach size. At present the Metro is expected to commence operations from May 2017.
Overall, 65 per cent work of the upcoming 11.10-km phase 1 Metro has been completed as per CIDCO officials. Upon completion of phase 1, work on the second 8.35-km phase 2 connecting Taloja to Khandeshwar would commence, which would cost around R4,000 crore. Thereafter, the interlink of 2 km between Pendhar and MIDC (near Taloja) costing Rs 504 crore would be constructed that would connect phase 1 and 2.
Railway crossing at Taloja: A few approvals from the Central Railway are remaining for constructing a 100 metre steel bridge over the railway lines near Taloja. Senior officials at CIDCO said that after several rejections and changes, the design approval process is in the final stages.
High-tension wire: A high-tension wire between Belapur and Kharghar cuts through the Metro line for which CIDCO has to obtain permission from the concerned authorities to extend height of the wires and let the Metro rail pass beneath it.