The Maharashtra government is looking to construct a mass transit connector between the Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport at Sahar and the proposed Navi Mumbai International Airport near Ulwe, expected to start operations by 2019. The distance between the two airports would be roughly 35 km. The state government has asked the City and Industrial Development Corporation (CIDCO) to come up with a public transport plan to link the airports.
A senior official from the chief minister’s office said, “We asked CIDCO to explore the best possible means of connecting the two airports and come out with a feasibility report.”
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He added that government officials discussed the issue Wednesday with the chief minister at a meeting at the ‘war room,’ set up by the chief minister’s office to fast-track showpiece projects in the state. The chief minister also reviewed projects such as the coastal road, Bhendi Bazaar redevelopment, Colaba-Bandra-Seepz Metro and the other proposed Metro lines for Mumbai.
Sanjay Bhatia, managing director, CIDCO, said that to establish direct public transport connectivity between the airports, the corporation will partially rely on a Metro line that the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) has planned. The 40-km line connecting Dahisar, Charkop, Bandra and Mankhurd will link the existing international airport at Sahar, Andheri to Mankhurd.
“There are two options. One is that CIDCO constructs a line from Mankhurd to the Navi Mumbai International Airport. The second option is the proposed Panvel-CST air-conditioned elevated railway corridor services from Mankhurd onwards. However, we have to first ensure that the Panvel-CST project is going to take shape soon,” Bhatia said.
To take a quick decision on which option the state government should adopt, CIDCO will hold a meeting with officials of the Mumbai Rail Vikas Corporation, MMRDA and Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation on Thursday.