Want to travel to Goa from Mumbai? Your wait to take a ferry to Nerul just got longer
Mumbai city news: Cidco is yet to get permission to remove the mangroves at the site. “We are just waiting for the forest department’s permission.mumbai Updated: Jun 23, 2017 12:13 IST
The passenger water transport on the city’s eastern waterfront has hit a roadblock again. Work on a hovercraft service between Nerul and Ferry Wharf has been delayed as the implementing agencies are waiting for clearance from the forest department.
The water transport service is expected to lessen the burden on the suburban railway network.
City and Industrial Development Corporation (Cidco) appointed a contractor to construct a jetty and a water transport terminal at Nerul. However, the agency is yet to get permission to remove the mangroves at the site. “We are just waiting for the forest department’s permission. Also, the ward committee’s approval is not on record. Once that is done, we will get the clearance,” said Bhushan Gagrani, vice-chairman and managing director, Cidco.
Senior officials from the Maharashtra Maritime Board (MMB), which is working on the project with CIDCO, said that bids for the hovercraft service will be floated later. “We expect to get the permit by next month. There cannot be any construction activities for the next couple of months because of the rains. The bids are likely to be invited by August.”
The MMB, which is also executing the Roll on-Roll off Passenger service or Ro-Pax service between Ferry Wharf and Mandwa near Alibaug, has received poor response. Despite three extensions, the MMB received only two bids. It had floated bids in March. “We are going to open the bids tomorrow,” said Atul Patne, CEO, MMB.
By April 2018, motorists travelling to Alibaug, Konkan Maharashtra or Goa will be able take ferries from Ferry Wharf up to Mandwa. A vessel is expected to accommodate around 40 cars and 300 passengers on a single trip.
A senior official said, “This will not only help motorists save time, but is also an environment-friendly option.” With the Ro-Pax services, the traffic on the Mumbai-Goa highway is expected to drop and so is the scurry for railway bookings.