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'Sahar Elevated Road is an engineering marvel'

The 27-metre-wide carriageway of this six-lane bridge is supported on a single pier and is the biggest of its kind in the country, says MMRDA Chief Engineer Sharad Sabnis

Apart from helping people save time while travelling towards the international airport from the Western Express Highway (WEH), the Sahar Elevated Road now has the distinction of being the widest bridge in the country to be constructed using the single pier technology.

With 27-metre-wide carriageway, the Sahar Elevated Road is the widest bridge in the country. File pic
With 27-metre-wide carriageway, the Sahar Elevated Road is the widest bridge in the country. File pic

Speaking to MiD DAY, MMRDA’s chief engineer, Sharad Sabnis, said, “Not only will the elevated road help passengers going towards the new terminal from the WEH reach it quickly, it has the widest carriageway compared to any other bridge in the country. The 27-metre-wide carriageway of this six-lane bridge is supported on a single pier. This makes the bridge an engineering marvel.”

Commenting on today’s inauguration of the elevated road, MMRDA Commissioner UPS Madan said, “On Friday, motorists attending the inauguration function of the Terminal-2 (T2) will be allowed to use the elevated road. However, the road will be thrown open for public use once T2 becomes operational.”

The elevated road was conceptualised due to absence of direct access to the international airport. The Sahar Elevated Road will facilitate commuters heading to and from the Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport (CSIA). Shaped using the Fish Belly Design. The construction work was executed by Larsen & Tubro (L&T), which was contracted for the job.

“After overcoming all the hurdles, the Rs 400.77-crore Sahar Elevated Road is nearing completion and will be commissioned very soon. This will ease traffic congestion on the WEH, especially at the Andheri-Kurla Road Junction,” explained Madan.

Major structural components
>> An elevated road from WEH to the international airport 1,300 m
>> Pedestrian and vehicular underpass on WEH, Vile Parle 45 m and MIAL underpass on Justice MC Chhagla Road 48 m
>> Vehicular underpass below the WEH: A fully underground vehicular 98.5-metre-long underpass with 262-metre-long ramps on either side of WEH to facilitate traffic coming from the southern side of the WEH to the airport. Palm trees and other plants on either side of the road will provide motorists with a pleasant driving experience

 

Palm trees dying?
While authorities made tall claims that drive on the Sahar Elevated Road would be pleasant one for motorists, as it has been landscaped with palm trees and various other plants, workers were seen plucking dead leaves off the palm trees yesterday. Moreover, it appeared that planting was carried out in an unplanned manner, as several stretches on the elevated road were devoid of palm trees.

Workers stand next to the heaps of dead leaves they plucked off the palms trees yesterday. Pic/Sayed Sameer Abedi
Workers stand next to the heaps of dead leaves they plucked off the palms trees yesterday. Pic/Sayed Sameer Abedi

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh will be inaugurating the road alongside the Terminal 2 at the international airport today. Commenting on the plantation on the trees, an official from Mumbai International Airport Limited said, “Our idea is not only to beautify the road, but also to make it secure. Hence, we came up with the idea of landscaping. Several small plants are yet to planted.

The palm trees have been brought from other states, so it is natural for them to shed leaves before they get acclimatised. Thus, the workers were seen plucking the dead leaves. This also gives the road a greener look. Several studies were conducted before we finalised on the trees and plants we wanted to use for landscaping. All are being watered from time to time and will be looked after properly.”

2.2 km
Length of the Sahar Elevated Road

27 metres
Width of the road

Rs 400 cr
Cost of the project

45 mins
Time motorists take to reach international airport via WEH at present

10 mins
Time required reaching the airport from WEH via the elevated road

- Neha LM Tripathi

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