Panvel ST depot makeover work to begin after monsoon
The 67-year-old bus depot has been in a pathetic state for the past seven yearsmumbai Updated: May 31, 2018 00:30 IST
The run-down Panvel State Transport (ST) bus depot, which sees 3,000 commuters a day, will soon see better days if the road transport body’s plan materialises.
The 67-year-old bus depot has been in a pathetic state for the past seven years.
The Maharashtra State Road Transport Corporation (MSRTC) had decided to redevelop 13 bus depots — Panvel is one among them — and make them passenger-friendly.
The entire work will cost Rs230 crore and tenders have been floated. The revamp plan includes dedicated parking lots, food courts, auto and taxi stands.
It has been more than a year since the government has been planning a makeover but nothing had been done.
Sunil Pawar, depot manager of Panvel ST, said, “The work of revamping the bus stop is likely to start after monsoon. The makeover would be done under build -operate- transfer basis. The developer will get space to make commercial complex and will maintain the depot for 30 years.”
Though Panvel depot is teeming with people, it has no facilities for passengers. There is not much space for passengers to sit and wait for bus. The washrooms are pathetic. The mobile toilet is lying unused because of lack of maintenance. The depot does not have a proper boundary.
Over the years, the condition of the bus depot worsened even as the number of passengers increased manifold.
The situation worsens during monsoon as the depot area is filled with muck and water. The roads inside the depot have not been repaired and they easily develop potholes and craters during monsoon.
Bhakti Kumar Dave, president of Panvel Pravasi Sangh, said, “Commuters wait for long-distance buses but there is no proper place for them to sit nor do the drivers have a common area to rest before driving back.”
The budget for the revamp has been revised for the second time and has been reduced to Rs230 crore from the earlier Rs350 crore.
“The union has approached us with problem of restroom and unhygienic condition at the bus depot but nothing has been done,” said Dave.
The huge space which was demarcated as workshop area for maintenance of buses is mostly used by the regional transport office to dump confiscated vehicles.
“Because of my work schedule, I frequently take buses from the depot but nothing has changed in years. The depot has been neglected and there is urgent need to streamline things,” said Vikas P, 49, a commuter.
Dinkar Patil, 46, an ST driver from Panvel depot, said, “During monsoon, the water-filed potholes pose a risk to buses plying over the broken road and are prone to lose control and it is difficult to distinguish road amid potholes.”
For years, drivers have been complaining about the pathetic situation but nothing has been done.