The Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Agency has urged the shopping malls located along the Metro 4 route to pitch in with a small share of the additional profits that they will accrue from the increased footfall the mass transit system will provide as a measure to keep fares low.
The Metro 4 route, which will run from Wadala to Thane-Kasarvadavli, will passes through the vicinity of eight large malls in Mumbai and Thane cities. Of the total of 30 stations – 17 within the limits of Mumbai city and 13 within Thane Municipal Corporation jurisdiction – eight are planned to be located exactly in front of these shopping malls.
In its detailed project report (DPR), the MMRDA – the nodal agency for Metro 4 – said that connectivity to the malls is a priority. A senior MMRDA official said the connectivity to the malls is a key aspect of the Metro line’s viability and profitability. “Not only is congestion of private transport outside the malls likely to be reduced, but footfall in the malls and passenger traffic on the Metro line are also expected to have a synergy,” the official said.
According to the DPR, R-Mall, Viviana Mall, Korum Mall and Eternity Mall in Thane will have a Metro station right outside their premises. R-Mall in Mulund, Nirmal Lifestyle Mall in Mulund, Magnet Mall and Dreams Mall in Bhandup will also be served by an easily accessible Metro station.
Dilip Kawathkar, joint project director and deputy metropolitan commissioner, confirmed that there is a plan to request the malls to pitch in, especially as a measure to keep fares low.
“It is in a very initial stage. We have asked mall owners to consider it, and if they agree, then the terms will be decided,” Kawathkar said. Letters have been sent to the management of these eight malls.
In addition, the MMRDA is also expecting that transit-oriented development around the Metro line will offset some of the expenditure cost on construction of the line. This is an additional step to work towards keeping Metro fares in control, officers said.
The total length of Metro 4 is 32.32 kilometres. The line, once operational, will link Wadala with Kasarvadavli in Thane via Ghatkopar and Mulund.
The fully elevated corridor will be further extended to Gaimukh, located further north of Kasarvadavli.
The estimated cost of the project is Rs 14,549 crore with an additional Rs 949 crore sanctioned for the extension to Gaimukh. Construction work is currently underway on the line and it is expected to be completed by 2022.