The Tree Authority (TA) of the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) on Friday approved a proposal to cut 41 trees and transplant 322 trees for the construction of a 9.9-km coastal road from Marine Driver to Worli.
Thirteen tree-cutting and transplantation proposals were tabled in the meeting for development projects including the coastal road, construction of a swimming pool at Mahalakshmi Sports Ground, and storm water drain widening. The proposals required 1,006 trees, of which 540 were to be transplanted, 134 new ones to be planted, 67 to be cut, and 399 to remain untouched. However, of the 13, six proposals were not taken for discussion.
For the coastal road project, the TA approved the cutting of 41 trees, and planting of 82 new ones, while 332 will be transplanted and 65 will remain untouched.
In February this year, the civic body had said that around 600 trees will be affected during the construction of the multi-crore coastal road. Of these, 140 are proposed to be cut, while 460 are to be transplanted.
Between Princess Street Flyover and Priyadarshani Park, 31 trees are proposed to be cut and 127 to be transplanted. Between Bhulabhia Desai Road and Tata Garden, 61 have been proposed to be cut, and 79 transplanted.
From Haji Ali to Lotus Junction at Lala Lajpatrai Road, 38 trees are proposed to be cut and 49 to be transplanted, and at Worli Seaface, 10 trees are to be cut, and 205 to be transplanted.
On Friday, of the total four proposals for the coastal road project, only two were taken for discussion.
Abhijit Samant, BJP Corporator and TA member, said, “We have requested the administration to undertake a physical meeting of the tree authority as opposed to video-conferencing…Clear communication is not possible in video conferences.”
Samant also asked the administration to take up tree transplantation work instead of depending on the project contractor for the same.
“There is no third-party audit of the transplantation work undertaken by the contractor,” he said. “Once the contractor gets the approval, the TA has no idea about the quality of work, if the transplantation was completed, and what the survival rate is, among other queries.”
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