Back to normal: one-way plan on Elphinstone, Currey Rd bridges fails after four days

After four days, officials opened the bridges to two-way traffic as it was worsening the congestion.

mumbai Updated: Jun 04, 2018 23:46 IST
Megha Sood
Megha Sood
Hindustan Times
Mumbai,Mumbai traffic jams,Currey Road bridge
Local Shiv Sena activists oppose the one-way plan.(Bhushan Koyande/HT Photo)

The experiment of trying to unclog central Mumbai by making the congested Elphinstone Road and Currey Road bridges one-way failed in just four days, and the traffic police on Monday started allowing vehicles to operate in both directions once again.

The plan, implemented without any prior notice or warning, upset motorists and led to chaos and protests by residents and local Shiv Sena activists.

Amitesh Kumar, joint commissioner of police (traffic), said the two bridges that connect the western and eastern parts of central Mumbai were made one-way to determine whether it would ease congestion and reduce travel time towards south Mumbai.

The original plan was to try out this experiment for 15 days, starting June 1. However, after observing the one-way traffic movement on the bridges for four days, the traffic police decided to scrap the idea. “The stretch from Bharat Mata to Currey Road could not sustain the traffic load created by the one-way, and was creating congestion,” he said.

Earlier, Kumar had cited a study that found Parel as being a major bottleneck for commuters from both the eastern and western suburbs heading to south Mumbai, and that the time taken to get from Bharat Mata to Currey Road took between 30 and 40 minutes. “We thought of doing the experiment for 15 days, but within four days we realised that the experiment needed to be modified,” Kumar said.

On Saturday, traffic police officials had said they would observe the weekend and weekday traffic until Wednesday and decide how to proceed.

Sources said the decision to make the bridges one-way was taken as the department received many complaints from commuters and the police wanted to see if the new arrangement would reduce travel time.

However, the plan seemed to have backfired as it upset people even more, leading to protests at the spots, perhaps as it was implemented without any notice and people were unprepared.

First Published: Jun 04, 2018 16:56 IST