A huge Rs 1,06,000 crore has been earmarked to improve Mumbai’s transportation system. Specifically, it is to be spent on the new elevated and suburban railway corridors, plus the network of Metro rail lines across Mumbai. Yet, on the drawing board, the two modes of transport are not in sync, which is vital to provide easy access to commuters. Transport experts from various NGOs will bring this issue to the attention of the CM Fadnavis before more funds are wasted in creating two separate entities.
Experts and activists claim that the government isn’t thinking of integrating the two modes of public transport, which is vital if travel is to be seamless in the city. "We are framing a letter to the CM. Sadly, though, government authorities only trust foreign consultants while taking such decisions," said Ashok Datar, chairman, Mumbai Environmental Social Network.
The activists claim highlight the fact that Mumbai’s first underground Metro 3 line from Colaba-Bandra-SEEPZ (33.5-kms) will not be linked to the subway openings at suburban stations. This metro will allow interchanges at Churchgate, CST, Grant Road, Mumbai Central and Mahalaxmi stations, but there wouldn’t be any direct connectivity between the two modes of transport.
"What is the point if people spill over onto the roads after taking local trains or the metro?" said Nayana Kathpalia, trustee, NAGAR — a body that looks at urban malaise — which is looking into urban issues.
"There is a need for a single transport body that will address and plan all modes of transport," said AV Shenoy, Mumbai Vikas Samiti.
The Rs 19,500 crore elevated rail corridor has barely got a token amount of Rs 10,000 in the Budget.
The Rs 14,500-crore CSMT-Panvel elevated corridor, got Rs 10 lakh for this year. It will connect the Navi Mumbai airport
This new rail corridor on the anvil shall be built at a cost of Rs 11,000 crore.