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Problems of plenty

mumbai Updated: Oct 03, 2009 01:57 IST
Shashank Rao
Shashank Rao
Hindustan Times
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It boasts an eight-lane highway. Its busy market place is located close to the railway station and getting an auto rickshaw here is rarely a problem.

But residents of the Kandivli East constituency are a dissatisfied lot.

They have been protesting against the ongoing work on the skywalk connecting the railway foot over bridge (FOB) to the western express highway—because it has made the approach road to the station more congested.

An expanding working population mainly comprising people in the 31 to 40-year age group has crowded the area.

Old residents rue the loss of greenery and open spaces to the concrete jungle.

Shyamal Aroskar, a homemaker in her 50s, has been living in Kandivli East for the past 25 years. “I loved Kandivli 10 years ago when it wasn’t crowded and skyscrapers didn’t block my view,” said Aroskar. Her husband, Pradip, is an architect and their teenaged sons are studying. But development has brought along some conveniences. Earlier, it was a 15-minute walk to the railway station to buy grocery. Now, everything is available almost at her doorstep.

But conveniences like shopping malls, multiplexes and restaurants have led to the constant traffic jams and an increasing number of vehicles.

The state government inaugurated two flyovers at Kandivli and Borivli six months ago. The Aroskars feel that the flyovers could have been better planned. “The government should have constructed long flyovers with outlets only at important exits between Goregaon and Borivli,” said Aroskar.

Those who commute by trains face different problems. According to the western railways, Kandivli has one among the most dangerous railway crossings. The railways have closed the level crossing after residents demanded it but people continue to cross through a small gap in the wall.

Some feel a skywalk will solve the problem. But there is opposition to it. “Vegetable vendors sit on the road so I don’t think many people would take the skywalk, especially during peak hours when they shop on their way back home,” Aroskar said.