The city commuter’s daily suburban journey will be easier, as the railway budget has given more emphasis to passenger amenities and big infrastructure projects.
In the budget presented in Parliament, Mumbai got new foot over-bridges (FOB), escalators, rail over-bridges (ROB) and money for passenger amenities.
Mumbai will get five more FOB’s on the central railway and eight more for western railway. Also, 20 more escalators are sanctioned in the railway budget. Of these, 12 will be on western and eight on the central railway. Prior to this, 31escalators were announced by Mumbai Railway Vikas Corporation for various stations in the city and the railway board had given eight for major stations like Dadar, Andhri, Borivali, Thane.
Dadar station will also get a new six-metre wide FOB, which will have escalators instead of steps. The estimated cost of this project is Rs 2.17 crore
“Escalators in place of steps to access the FOBs will give relief to passengers at major stations,” said a western railway spokesperson.
“To close unmanned level-crossing gates (LC gates) on central railway, 16 new rail over bridges have been sanctioned. Of these, one will be at Diva and another at Thakurli,” said a senior central railway officer.
Mumbai urban transport projects have been allocated Rs500 crore. Of this Rs70 Cr has been sanctioned for MUTP-I, which will be shut down soon, and Rs352 Cr has been allotted for ongoing MUTP-II. Major projects such as the Thane-Diva 5th and 6th line will get a boost thanks to this.
Other railway infrastructure projects have been allocated money in the budget. The Kalyan-Kasara 3rd line, which will help in the decongestion of passenger traffic on this route, has been allotted Rs6 crore. The doubling work at the Panvel-Roha line has got Rs7 crore, which will help to run more trains in Konkan.
The chief minister has asked the railway to expedite the much-delayed Nerul-Uran new line project. It has got Rs10.34 crore in the budget and it will give connectivity to the Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust (JNPT).