The Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) and the Maharashtra State Road Development Corporation (MSRDC) have swapped two key infrastructure projects, Virar-Alibaug Multimodal Corridor and the Thane-Borivali Twin Tunnel.
At a meeting on August 19, the MSRDC signed a deal with the MMRDA to take over the construction of the 16-lane Virar-Alibaug multimodal corridor, officials said. The MMRDA would now construct the twin tunnels from Borivali’s Sanjay Gandhi National Park (SGNP) to Mulund, they said. While the state government’s approval is awaited, a senior MSRDC officer said, “It is an understanding between two agencies, and soon will get a go ahead from the Maharashtra government.”
A proposal to swap the projects, an MSRDC officer said, had been mooted earlier as well. While in the past only the responsibility of executing the project was proposed to be exchanged, the agencies will now also be responsible for raising funds for the two projects.
“We have taken over the 16-lane multimodal corridor from the MMRDA, which will now implement our twin tunnel project,” Radheshyam Mopalwar, chairman and managing director, MSRDC, said Tuesday.
The MSRDC, which has constructed the Mumbai-Pune Expressway, is currently working on the Mumbai-Nagpur Samruddhi Road Corridor. Because of its expertise on inter-city roads, it was decided to hand over the Virar-Alibaug multimodal corridor to it.
The 126-kilometre-long Virar-Alibaug corridor has been with the MMRDA since 2015. It was supposed to be constructed in two parts, first a 98.5-km highway between Navghar and Balavali; and then 29.9 km between Balavali and Alibaug. The authority was supposed to start the construction for the first phase earlier this year, but land acquisition and the coronavirus pandemic stalled the project.
The twin tunnel project, which was to be implemented by MSRDC, has been in the planning stage since 2015. Work on the project, which is set to cut down travel time between Borivali and Mulund from 50 minutes to 20 minutes, is yet to begin.
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