After a year’s stand-off over sharing the cost of construction, the Mumbai Port Trust (MbPT) has decided to provide land to the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) for development of a station against the cost of construction of an 8-km underground corridor for Metro Line 11.
The MbPT wanted an underground corridor for the distance that will be covered by Metro Line 11. The MMRDA had asked the MbPT to bear the construction cost for such a corridor, as it cost three times the cost of an elevated corridor.
The MbPT will provide land for the development of a Metro station against Rs 3,000 crore, which is the cost of construction of the underground corridor.
The MbPT chairman had earlier conveyed to MMRDA that the port trust did not have the money to pay the MMRDA for the corridor’s construction.
Since July 2019, when the corridor got the state cabinet’s approval, the MMRDA and the MbPt have been involved in cost-sharing talks. An 8.76-km distance of the Metro Line 11 will be underground and a 4-km portion will be elevated. The project’s total estimated cost is Rs 8,739 crore, of which Japan International Corporation Association (JICA) is funding Rs 2,022 crore. The talks between MMRDA and MbPT were about sharing the balance equally, working out to about Rs 3,000 crore each.
“The MbPT is ready to give land for the development of Metro stations,” MbPT chairman Sanjay Bhatia told The Indian Express.
Bhatia added that the agency was still working out the amount of land to be given to MMRDA. He said MMRDA could put the land to commercial use in order to generate more revenue.
Chief of MMRDA R A Rajeev said, “We are in talks with international institutions over funds for the project and most of the international financial institutions have shown an interest.”
Rajeev said it had not yet been decided how much land the MMRDA will get from the MbPT. “But yes, the project will be underground,” he added.
Metro Line 11 is an extension of Metro Line 4 (Wadala-Kasarwadavali-Thane). According to the current plan, the alignment for Metro 4 starts from Thane and enters Mumbai limits via LBS Marg from Mulund, heads towards Wadala via the Eastern Express Highway (EEH). From Wadala, the Metro will be connected via an extension that will traverse Rafi Ahmed Kidwai (RAK) Marg and head towards CSMT.
The corridor is expected to be completed by 2026. Once it is completed, it will give nearly 10 lakh commuters, who travel between Thane and CSMT on local trains, an alternate mode of transport.
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