Office goers at Bandra Kurla Complex (BKC), for whom the daily commute to the station after work is a nightmare, could have reason to cheer. The Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) and transport expert Ashok Datar have come up with a plan for a dedicated bus lane from MTNL junction to Kalanagar junction. The plan has in-principle approval of officials concerned and only remains to be finalised.
Dedicated bus lanes were among the many suggestions made by experts, including Datar, when Hindustan Times, in September this year, presented the commuters’ charter of demands to political parties and discussed ways in which the city’s roads can be unclogged.
MMRDA sources said authorities would start implementing the plan in January next year. While MMRDA will carry out construction work, the traffic police will supervise the work.
BKC is seen as a well-planned business district thanks to its wide roads, a good parking system and other amenities.
Connectivity, however, is its biggest problem. With serpentine queues of vehicles seen during peak hours, one can end up spending at least 30 to 45 minutes trying to get to either Bandra station or Kurla station in the evening.
Under the proposed plan, only public transport buses will be allowed to ply on the dedicated bus lane.
Because of this, one can reach Kalanagar in just a few minutes, from where one can take the skywalk to Bandra station.
“Initially, a dedicated lane will be constructed for traffic going from MTNL junction to Kalanagar junction. After studying its usefulness, a dedicated lane will be constructed on the other side as well,” Datar said. In addition to dedicated lanes, a walkway is proposed from MTNL junction to Kurla station so pedestrians can reach the station with ease. As per the study conducted by Datar, one can reach Kurla station from MTNL junction in 15 minutes on foot as against 16 minutes by car and 24 minutes by bus.
After a round of meetings, MMRDA and traffic officials gave the plan the green light. PRK Murthy, chief of transport department, MMRDA, said “We have given an in-principle approval to the plan. We will finalise it soon.”
MMRDA sources said authorities would start implementing the plan in January next year. While MMRDA will carry out construction work, the traffic police will look after supervision.