To decongest the chock-a-block Jogeshwari station, the Western Railway (WR) plans to add and improve passenger amenities at the station. The plan, which will be undertaken at an estimated cost of Rs 7-8 crore, will include increasing the length and breadth of platforms, providing escalators at the station and modifying the staircases of the foot over-bridges. For the past one week, commuters using the station are complaining against a surge in crowd on the two foot overbridges at the station. Last week, railway authorities closed the gaps near the station’s southern end that allowed commuters to enter platforms after crossing the tracks. This, according to local residents, has led to the surge in crowd on the bridges.
Commuters also complained they are having to queue up to climb the bridges, saying this was adding to commute time and leading to congestion on the bridges during peak hours. “We are proposing a master plan to improve the travel experience of regular commuters at Jogeshwari station. We will increase the width of the island platform by an additional 2 metres. This will be done by reducing the width of the other island platform, which is hardly used. We are also extending the foot overbridge towards the southern side to accommodate 15-car rakes,” said Mukul Jain, Divisional Railway Manager, WR.
Jogeshwari station sees a daily average footfall of one lakh commuters. Over three months back, platform 1 was broken for the extension of the western Harbour line till Goregaon station. While the platform’s width was extended by 8 metres, crowd continues to build up on the existing platform. As many as 20 Railway Protection Force constables have been posted at the station to manage the crowd. “For three-four days, I have been arriving ten minutes before the arrival of my train as the crowd on platform 1 has increased significantly. During peak hours, it takes as much as 15 minutes to cross the foot overbridge,” said Anih Kattumani, an IT professional who regularly travels to Goregaon.
“We are rebuilding the existing staircases at the station. After more space is available with the extension of the platform, we would be able to increase the width of the existing staircases. We are also going to provide as many as four escalators at the station soon,” Jain said. Jogeshwari will see another platform after the extension of the western Harbour line till Goregaon. “In place of the existing subway, we have asked Mumbai Rail Vikas Corporation (MRVC) to make a foot overbridge. This will be provided with a skywalk to ensure commuters can travel between the platforms used for the Western and Harbour lines. The measures will be in place in a year,” Jain added.
The station will get a third foot overbridge, made by MRVC, within a month. Bharat Kudkar, a regular commuter at Jogeshwari station, said, “These measures will decongest the station in a big way. The station is in need of a revamp and we hope the measures are in place soon.”