The World Bank (WB) has shown willingness to fund the third phase of the Mumbai Urban Transport Project (MUTP), which is aimed at improving mass transport projects in Mumbai and its neighbouring areas.
The WB has been a major funding agency for the MUTP.
Currently, MUTP’s phase 1 and 2 are under implementation. The third phase focuses on improving rail connectivity between eastern and western suburbs and expanding suburban services further in far-off suburbs.
On Thursday, a WB delegation held preliminary talks with officials of the Mumbai Rail Vikas Corporation (MRVC) to understand the projects that can be implemented under the third phase of the MUTP. However, there is no commitment from the WB that it would definitely fund the projects. The decision would depend on the viability of the projects.
"We will review the projects under MUTP phase-3 identified in the long term plan, which at present seem ambitious,” said World Bank representative Hubert Nove-Josserand.
Some of the proposed works under phase-3 are the Bandra-Kurla East-West suburban link, fast corridor on Harbour line that connects Mumbai with Navi Mumbai, extension of Harbour line from Goregaon to Borivli, additional 3rd and 4th line on the Virar-Dahanu stretch, and additional 5th and 6th line on the Borivli-Virar stretch.
The WB officials said the basic job was to identify the projects that needed to be undertaken, designs of the route and volume of people who might use it, before deciding details on funding patterns and its deadline.
“We will have to study the projects under MUTP phase-III and then decide how best funds can be used to implement the project,” said WB spokesperson Sudip Majumdar.
The MRVC and WB will also call for public view namely from architects, transport planners, IITians and even students from architectural college before deciding the nature of the route and design of the projects under MUTP-3. “In January, we would call for suggestions and designs on what projects can be implemented in the third phase,” said PC Sehgal, managing director, MRVC.