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Maharashtra road agency looks to extend proposed Versova-Bandra sea link to Virar

A senior official from MSRDC said the proposal is at the discussion stage

mumbai Updated: Mar 28, 2018 10:17 IST
Tanushree Venkatraman
Tanushree Venkatraman
Hindustan Times
(HT File)

The proposed Versova-Bandra sea link (VBSL) may be extended to Virar. The Maharashtra State Road Development Corporation (MSRDC), the implementing agency, is looking at the possibility for better connectivity between neighbouring Virar and the metropolitan region.

A senior official from MSRDC said the proposal is at the discussion stage, and the agency plans to undertake a study for the possible sea-route. “There cannot be any extension or widening to the Western Express Highway. With the Metros coming up, there is no scope for any elevated route. So, we are looking at exploring the sea route again to reduce congestion,” a senior official associated with the project said.

The arterial roads in the western suburbs and Western Express Highway are severely congested during peak hours and a parallel road is expected to ease this. It takes more than two hours to travel from Bandra to Virar.

The VBSL is a part of the state’s ambitious coastal road project that aims to connect South Mumbai to the western suburbs. The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation’s (BMC) ambitious 29.2-km coastal road will be built in two phases. In Phase-I of the Rs12,000-crore project, the civic body will construct the south Mumbai stretch from Princess Street Flyover to Bandra-Worli sea link. The second phase, a 9.3-km sea route from Bandra to Versova, will be built by the MSRDC.

Earlier, the Mumbai Metropolitan Regional Development Authority (MMRDA) had suggested that BMC extend the coastal road till Virar as per the regional plan of the Mumbai Metropolitan Region 2016-36. However, senior BMC officials said the corporation is only looking at Phase-1 and the work on-ground is expected to start from May.

Meanwhile, the MSRDC will soon appoint a contractor for the sea link during its board meeting. The project loans will be funded by the state government-approved toll realised from commuters up to 2052.

First Published: Mar 28, 2018 10:17 IST