You could zip along the coast from Navi Mumbai to Vasai in a catamaran if the Navi Mumbai Municipal Corporation’s futuristic water transport project becomes a reality.
The corporation has proposed to expedite the plans for setting up a passenger water transport system running from Vasai Fort to Belapur Fort.
The system will pass areas such as Vashi, Nerul, Airoli, Thane and Ghodbunder to Vasai using the Thane Creek and Ulhas river.
The catch: the project will get a nod after the Unified Metropolitan Transport Authority (UMTA), which looks after the transport infrastructure of the Mumbai Metropolitan Region (MMR), checks its feasibility.
“We had a meeting with the UMTA today and we have submitted the proposal. The decision to start the project will be taken when the UMTA evaluates its feasibility,” Navi Mumbai municipal commissioner Bhaskar Wankhede said.
The corporation had proposed the project in 2008 but nothing came out of it.
Civic officials believe that with such a large population travelling from Navi Mumbai to other parts of Mumbai, a water transport system that provides connectivity to the northern part of Mumbai would be useful.
The Maharashtra State Road Development Corporation is already planning the East Coast water transport system, which will link Navi Mumbai to the Gateway of India.
The proposed system will use the Thane creek, which stretches from Mumbra to Vashi, and the Ulhas River.
The Thane creek was once an important harbour, but is now used only by sand dredgers and fishermen.
Plans to use the waters off Mumbai’s coast for ferrying passengers were first proposed at least 28 years ago.
A service connecting Navi Mumbai to south Mumbai was introduced in early 2000 but it was shut because of poor response.
The government has already given a go-ahead to three ferry lines — the East Coast project, the West Coast project and the Ro-Ro service — but work has not begun on any of these.