3km stretch on Bhiwandi - Kalyan Metro line to be built underground, saving 735 structures
In order to prevent the demolition of thousands of structures in the much-awaited Phase 2 of Metro 5 project between Bhiwandi and Kalyan cities, the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority has decided to build underground the Metro line for the 3km stretch from Rajiv Gandhi Chowk to Temghar
In order to prevent the demolition of thousands of structures in the much-awaited Phase 2 of Metro 5 project between Bhiwandi and Kalyan cities, the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) has decided to build underground the Metro line for the 3km stretch from Rajiv Gandhi chowk to Temghar.
With this idea by the MMRDA, out of the 1,597 structures – both commercial and residential – around 735 structures would be saved, claimed the MMRDA officials.
“After the Dhamankar Naka, there is a right turn and there are around 2,000 establishments that will be affected. Instead of demolishing so many structures, we decided to go underground and build the Metro line and save as many structures as possible. So, the revised plan was decided,” said SVR Srinivas, commissioner, MMRDA.
On record, as per the survey, the MMRDA claimed 1,597 structures would be affected during the project. However, the number of establishments on this 3km stretch from Rajiv Gandhi chowk to Temghar is around 2,000, claimed the MMRDA commissioner.
“The underground Metro line will be built around 22-25m below the road. The work of the Phase 2 of the Metro 5 project has not yet begun and that is why we have taken this decision prior to it. If around 2,000 structures were to be demolished, rehabilitation of those affected would be a concern,” added Srinivas.
As of now, only 862 establishments would be affected, as per the MMRDA. As MMRDA has made this Metro route underground, the flyover at Dhamankar Naka would be demolished and the 1.5km road up to Rajiv Gandhi Chowk would be widened. Underpasses and service roads will be constructed.
Bhiwandi and Gopal Nagar Metro stations were proposed on the route from Dhamankar Naka to Temghar. However, the meeting approved the cancellation of Gopal Nagar station as the road from Rajiv Gandhi Chowk to Temghar will be underground in the new plan.
Meanwhile, with the new plan, the cost of the project will also increase by ₹1,727Cr due to the underground work. At the time of the proposal of the project, an expenditure of ₹8,417Cr was approved.
The demolition work of the 862 establishments would be carried out by the Bhiwandi Nizampur City Municipal Corporation (BNCMC) and the civic body will have to look after the rehabilitation of those affected.
In the Phase 1 of Metro 5 project, which is from Thane to Bhiwandi, at present, 50.70% progress has been made.
A 25km long Thane-Bhiwandi-Kalyan metro line was approved by the Maharashtra Cabinet in October 2017. Although the Phase 1 of the project is progressing, the Phase 2 of this project is yet to begin.
“The phase is supposed to begin in another five to six months’ time. We have set a target accordingly,” said Srinivas.
Earlier, activists and builders from Kalyan had written to the MMRDA to change the route for the Bhiwandi–Kalyan Metro line as it was not near the Kalyan railway station. The MMRDA, however, has not considered changing the route.
“We made a study on the number of passengers and based on that we have not changed the route,” said Srinivas.
The study found that Kalyan would see around 46 lakh residents by 2031 while the neighbouring Bhiwandi population would rise from 6.8 lakh to 13 lakh.
For Bhiwandi residents, the best way to connect to other cities is the road. The Metro will not only improve connectivity in Bhiwandi but will also pave the way for infrastructural development.
As per the authorities, one of the major advantages of the proposed Thane-Bhiwandi-Kalyan Metro will be the improvement in the connectivity between these three cities.
“It is high time we have the Metro line between Bhiwandi and Kalyan cities as many are right now dependant on road transport that takes a lot of time due to traffic congestion. The Metro will be a major relief,” said Santosh Pandey, a 38-year-old resident of Bhiwandi.