Thane Creek bridge finds a maker
The Maharashtra State Road Development Corporation (MSRDC) has found funding of R600 crore from the Public Works Department (PWD) for its proposed bridge linking Mumbai and Navi Mumbai. The MSRDC hopes that this will spell an end to the traffic snarls at peak hours that the existing narrow Thane Creek Bridge is infamous for.
MSRDC stated that it will go ahead with the project as the City and Industrial Development Corporation (CIDCO) has already given an in-principal approval to partly fund the project. According to plans, two bridges with three lanes each, will be constructed on either side of the existing two-lane Thane Creek Bridge.
The plan, which had been initiated in 2012, met a roadblock with no funding in sight. MSRDC vice chairman and managing director, Anil Diggikar, said, “The project is crucial since it will solve the issue of traffic jams on the old bridge that passes over Vashi creek. We have decided to take the project ahead with funds from PWD and CIDCO.”
In 2013, MSRDC had even approached the MMRDA for funding but had been met with a negative response. The MMRDA thought the bridge as competition to it’s own project — the 22 km long Mumbai Trans Harbour Link (MTHL). In 2013, a senior MMRDA official had told mid-day, “Construction of a new bridge passing over the Thane Creek and connecting Mumbai with Navi Mumbai is of little use, with the MTHL coming up.”
The design of the proposed bridges will be similar to the present one, keeping in mind high costs and construction time. The MSRDC will invite tenders in the next two months and work is scheduled to begin at the end of the year. It will be two years before it’s ready for Mumbaikars to ride on.