Mumbaikars travelling to and from Bandra Kurla Complex (BKC) or Eastern Express Highway can now reach their destinations faster. Thanks to the four-lane BKC-Chunabhatti connector that was made operational Sunday evening, the commuters using the flyover can now avoid traffic congestion at Dharavi and Sion junctions and save 30 minutes of their journey time, announced Maharashtra’s caretaker Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis.
“This 1.6-km long, 17-metre wide and 4-lane Bandra-Kurla Complex to Chunabhatti Connector will also ease traffic towards Thane-Nashik and Panvel-Pune. This 4-lane Connector will also provide faster connectivity to and from the Eastern Express Highway,” he added.
In public interest, I declare that BKC-Chunabhatti Connector (flyover) stands open from today evening.
— Devendra Fadnavis (@Dev_Fadnavis) November 10, 2019
The fish-belly shaped elevated corridor will pass through BKC, Babubhai Compound, Central Railway (near Scion), Duncan Colony, Harbour Line (Chunabhati station) and Sumaiya ground, before culminating at Eastern Express Highway. This is “yet another step towards bringing ease in living for Mumbaikars”, Fadnavis remarked.
Only small vehicles from bikes to cars are allowed on the carriageway. Trucks and heavy vehicles are not allowed.
How Mumbaikars are reacting
In a city, quite known for its traffic logjams, residents seem to be happy with the initiative and have been tweeting out their experiences since Monday morning.
Viji Venkatesh, Region Head, South Asia, The Max Foundation, tweeted that she travelled from Priyadarshini to BKC in just five minutes.
— Viji Venkatesh (@vijivenkatesh) November 11, 2019
Another Mumbaikar thanked Fadnavis for the connector as she described how hard it was to believe that she reached Western Express Highway to Eastern express Highway in just 10 minutes during peak office hours.
Unbelievable! I reached weh from eeh in 10 minutes in peak hour traffic this morning on the BKC Chunabhatti flyover. And it was such a pleasant drive with good views across! Pinching myself hard!! @RoadsOfMumbai Thank you @Dev_Fadnavis https://t.co/hQvTT8g7b9
— Mango girl (@MissRichaa) November 11, 2019
Another Twitter user wrote that she started from Chunabhatti and was in BKC within fveminutes.
— Richa S (@MumbaiMuggle) November 11, 2019
The long wait and protest
The project was long-pending and had missed several deadlines before it finally opened for the public on Sunday. Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority had planned the project in 2014 at an estimated cost of Rs 156 crore. The aim was to give motorists direct connectivity from BKC to Eastern Express Highway. In October, NCP workers led by its party chief Nawab Malik had gathered on the flyover to forcibly open the corridor. However, they withdrew the protest after MMRDA assured that the road would be opened within a week.