Metro, mono rail, bus – Mumbai’s Wadala to have it allUpdated: Sep 04, 2019 03:49 IST
The Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) has firmed up plans to build a multi-modal transport hub in Wadala spread across 18.44 hectares. The hub, which will be built near the Wadala mono rail station, will include all public transport arms, including Metro (station and a car shed), inter-city bus terminal, Brihanmumbai Electric Supply and Transport (BEST) feeder buses, improved road access and proposed harbour railway connectivity to Navi Mumbai.
The hub will also include area from BEST Anik Bus depot. The depot will also be used to house the Metro car shed and the area near the depot will be used for the development of the Interstate Bus Terminal (ISBT).
The development of the multi-modal transport hub has been stated in the final draft of the Comprehensive Transport Study (CTS) for the Mumbai Metropolitan Region (MMR). The updated study of 2019 CTS, which is being finalised by MMRDA, was shared with different planning and transport agencies, including railways, for their suggestions and comments last week. After the study, designs of the multi-transport hub will be prepared after which work orders for the construction of the hub will undertaken by the MMRDA.
The transport hub once completed will enable passengers to commute with multiple modes of transportation and interchange all under one roof. It will in turn give boost to the state government’s pending proposal to transform Wadala into a commercial hub. With the construction of the multi-modal transport hub, the state government aims to create 1.2 lakh jobs in the different public transport system that will be introduced in Wadala, said a MMRDA official.
The harbour railway connectivity to Wadala has been proposed through the Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Terminus (CSMT)-Panvel elevated corridor in the CTS. However, the Mumbai Rail Vikas Corporation (MRVC) is in discussion with MMRDA to commence the elevated harbour corridor from Wadala railway station. The CTS study has also proposed improving road connectivity to Wadala by widening of Sewri-Chembur bridge adjacent to the Anik bus depot, adding a connector to the Eastern Freeway with traffic signal controlled system, extension of the Metro corridor from Wadala to Carnac Bunder and extension of flyover on the Eastern Express Way to the Sewri-Chembur road.
“The entire area will be developed into a commercial hub. We plan to operate feeder buses for commuters from Metro, railway stations as the residential and commercial growth increases here,” said a BEST official.
“Wadala hub has been planned as a transit-oriented development plan. It will promote a walk-to-work culture. This will be helpful for commuters as well as people, who reside in Wadala,” said an MMRDA official.
Transport experts welcomed the development of a multi-modal transport hub but questioned the need for a new commercial hub in central Mumbai instead of in the outer suburbs or the metropolitan region. “The concept of multiple modes of transport under one umbrella is good and will help the passengers. However, there is no need for a commercial hub. Development should be done to the north of the city and not the south. People should not have to travel for hours to reach their workplace,” said transport expert Ashok Datar.
MMRDA has been appointed as the special planning authority for Wadala and plans to develop the nearly 156.52 hectares into a commercial hub.