New Metro, sea routes will connect Navi Mumbai airport

In a recent report submitted to state government and other authorities, 2 metro corridors and 2 water routes have been proposed, in addition to several road and rail routes

Even as the first metro rail corridor is fumbling to the finish line, two new metro corridors have been proposed to connect the Navi Mumbai International Airport (NMIA) itself a long way away from completion to south Mumbai and the western suburbs.

In addition, the inland passenger water transport project has also made a comeback, as part of the holistic transport plan to facilitate commute to the airport.

It will require pressing into service catamarans and hovercrafts, officials said. The proposals were pitched in a recent report submitted by international firm LEA Associates to the state government, railways and infrastructure agencies.

A few days ago, Principal Secretary of Urban Development TC Benjamin and railway officials even made a presentation to the World Bank for financing the projects.

"This report will now be studied by the state government and CIDCO who are the owners of the land. It was meant to identify the most feasible modes of transport that could help connecting the new airport," said a senior government official on condition of anonymity.

Metro connectivity
The two metro routes, which will directly connect NMIA, are Andheri-Ghatkopar-Mankhurd-Vashi-NMIA-Panvel, which is expected to cost Rs 13,000 crore, and Colaba-Siddhivinayak-Sewri-NMIA, likely to cost Rs 15,000 crore. They will be aligned in a way that they intersect two or more other rail corridors.

These modes of transport would be among several other road routes, monorails and suburban rail routes that have been proposed for ferrying over 10 million passengers to the new airport, once it becomes part-operational by 2014.

Catamarans too
Apart from these, two passenger water transport routes have been identified. The first one will be from Ferry Wharf in SoBo to NMIA/Belapur and the other from Radio Club at Gateway of India to NMIA/Belapur.

They will be built at a cost of Rs 250 crore approximately. Catamarans and hovercrafts would be used for the purpose. Until now, the government has failed to implement the water transport projects on eastern and western corridors.

The approximate travel time anticipated to reach NMIA through the metro rails is 80 minutes, while the travel time taken via the water route is 30 minutes, excluding the waiting period at the terminals.

New fast corridors
Apart from these new routes, the report mentions the need for the proposed Rs 1,300 crore fast rail corridor on CST-Panvel and Panvel-Uran routes, and the doubling of tracks on Panvel-Karjat route, in addition to increasing train services on Vasai-Diva-Panvel section.

Rs 28k cr
Approximate cost of building metro corridors to connect NMIA with western suburbs and island city

Rs 250 cr

Approximate cost of building the two water transport routes

80 mins
Approximate projected travel time to reach NMIA through metro rails

30 mins

Approximate projected travel time to reach NMIA via sea route

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