Mumbai civic body plans escape routes, safe room, better ventilation for coastal road
Last week, the BMC gave a final approval for the construction of the first phase (southern part) of the coastal road, estimated at more than ₹12,000 crore.
Placing safety first, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation’s (BMC) ambitious 29.2-km coastal road — from Princess Street Flyover to Kandivli — will have an advanced ventilation system, emergency escape routes and a safe room for its underground tunnel, said civic officials.
Last week, the BMC gave a final approval for the construction of the first phase (southern part) of the coastal road, estimated at more than ₹12,000 crore. The first phase of the project is a 9.98-km stretch between Princess Street flyover and Bandra-Worli Sea Link (BWSL). This phase will include a 3.45km, 11m-wide underground tunnel from Princess Street flyover to Priyadarshini Park, running under Girgaum Chowpatty and Malabar Hill.
According to an official, the BMC will install a Saccardo nozzle system, instead of the existing jet fan-based system, for the tunnel’s ventilation. In the event of a fire, the fans in the Saccardo system are not affected and hence there is lower maintenance cost. Also, there is continuous air circulation with the system.
“In most cases, it gets suffocating inside the tunnel because of the release of carbon monoxide from vehicles. The nozzle system will help control pollution. Among other benefits, the traffic will not be diverted during maintenance work,” said Mohan Machiwal, chief engineer, coastal road.
Officials said the civic body will install a structural fire protection system — insulation materials, coatings, and systems used to prevent or delay fire-induced temperature rise — that can withstand 1,300 °C. This system will be earthquake resistant.
According to officials, the tunnel will also have a safe room where people can be moved into until the fire is under control and citizens are rescued. Thirteen cross tunnels, one every 250m, will be used to rescue and move vehicles and people during a disaster. Seven cross tunnels will be for vehicles and the remaining six are for people.