Deviating from its set of objectives that seek development of transport infrastructure for the people of the state, the Maharashtra State Road Development Corporation (MSRDC) seems to be focusing on non-transport infrastructure projects such as theme park and Formula 1 racing track.
The MSRDC has decided to construct an F1 racing track in the Mumbai Metropolitan Region (MMR) and has appointed a consultant to undertake survey of 12 locations. The MSRDC will shell out Rs. 8.96 crore as consultancy charges.
The corporation has also floated tenders for development of a theme park at Savroli along the Mumbai- Pune Expressway where it has planned an amusement park, restaurants, a theatre and gardens on 80 acres of land.
Nitin Dossa, a transport expert and executive chairman of Western India Automobiles Association (WIAA), said: “The MSRDC’s job is to construct road network and not theme parks and F1 racing tracks. If it wants to construct infrastructure for commuters then it should construct economical dormitories and restaurants on the highways, which will be beneficial for drivers who are exhausted after sleepless hours of driving.”
Incidentally, around two years ago, chief minister Prithviraj Chavan had asked the corporation to concentrate on road projects that are the corporation’s core area of specialisation.
Vinod Tawde, leader of Opposition in the state legislative council, crtiticised the MSRDC for losing focus. “It should just focus on construction of roads across the state for people and not F1 racing track and theme parks.”
Minister of state for public works Jaidatt Kshirsagar and MSRDC managing director Bipin Shrimali could not be reached for comment despite repeated attempts.