After increasing the cost of the Goregaon-Mulund Link Road project from Rs 1,300 crore to Rs 2,100 crore earlier this year after the alignment was altered, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) is now adding more elements which is expected to further escalate the cost of the ambitious project. After the new alignment was finalised, the civic body realised that traffic congestion at four junctions of the GMLR would slow down vehicles and decided to construct interchanges on at least three locations to ensure smooth traffic on the east-west connector.
In order to work out the finer details of the interchanges, the BMC appointed a consultant a month ago. The consultant’s report is expected this week. “Vehicles entering or exiting the 4.7 km long tunnel will have to experience traffic congestion at four T junctions which will defeat the purpose of the most important east-west connector. We have thus decided to construct interchanges in at least three junctions including the one at LBS Marg, JN Road and the Eastern Express Highway,” said additional municipal commissioner Sanjay Mukherjee.
Mukherjee added that the consultant has used the Comprehensive Mobility Plan, a two-year-long extensive study carried out by the BMC, as a reference to finalise the design of the interchanges to bypass traffic congestion at the junction. After the submission of the consultant’s report, another civic official said that the design of the interchanges will be finalised by June 15. “The interchanges were suggested as part of the new alignment and the change in the total cost can only be determined once the estimates are prepared,” the official said.
The team of officials working on the GMLR project is also waiting for the design basis report to start work on the tunnel being prepared by consultant Pedico. The official added that after the submission of the report, the civic body will start applying for environment, forest and wildlife clearance since it will go through land which is owned by the Sanjay Gandhi National Park.