Your local train will not crawl between Andheri and Jogeshwari stations anymore
Yard remodelling and replacement of a girder have allowed for speed restrictions to be relaxedUpdated: Mar 15, 2018 16:41 IST
Following a yard remodelling and girder replacement, suburban trains on the Churchgate-Virar route – one of the busiest suburban railway routes in India – are likely to run faster.
After more than 12 years, the trains can now ply at the speed of 100 kilometres per hour (kmph) on the fast line at Andheri station. Ending the crawling of trains, this is expected to reduce the travel time of commuters on the Churchgate-Borivli-Virar stretch by one to three minutes.
This has been made possible as the Western Railway (WR) has relaxed speed restrictions on the stretch between Andheri and Jogeshwari stations on the fast line, raising it from 50 kmph to 100 kmph starting this week.
The move is expected to improve the pace and punctuality of the local trains on the WR. Of the 1,355 daily suburban services, more than 1,000 pass via Andheri.
Two permanent speed restrictions of 50 kmph - the first, on a diamond-shaped crossing and the second, above a vehicular underpass (known as Andheri subway) - were responsible for the delay of trains on this route.
The first speed restriction was imposed as the area had a complex diamond crossing and train drivers had to tread the path carefully. The second speed restriction was due to minor cracks that had developed on the girders on the stretch above the underpass.
These restrictions were the primary reason behind crawling of the trains while travelling from Khar onwards while travelling to Borivli, and Goregaon onwards while travelling to Churchgate.
Railway officials have stated that the relaxation of speed restriction is a significant development which will aid smooth operation of suburban trains.
Removal of the speed restrictions was made possible due to the remodeling of Andheri station yard and replacement the faulty girder of the bridge.
The plan for the work had been proposed 12 years ago but the administration was reluctant to take it up, fearing passengers’ reactions.
Mukul Jain, divisional Railway manager of WR, Mumbai division, said, “The work was completed in 84 days, without any major disruption of suburban traffic. We undertook two blocks of six hours each for replacement of bridge girders.”
The diamond crossing has been replaced with six new crossing points and an improved signaling system. The track curvature has also been reduced, increasing the train speed.
“Earlier, the trains used to slow down before Andheri by default, but now, I have noticed that trains pass without crawling,” said S Waradkar, resident of Virar.