March 12, 2013 3:23:06 am
The under-construction Eastern Freeway will have 3-metre high vision barriers to shield from public view large establishments of oil companies,which may be easy targets once the landmark corridor is opened for public use.
The Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) is installing these vision barriers for about 2.3 km on the eastern side and about 700m on the western side of the 9.3-km Eastern Freeway,which stretches from Orange Gate in south Mumbai to Anik near Wadala.
The MMRDA will spend Rs 2.68 crore on these view cutters,which will be steel structures made of a light-weight sheet.
The MMRDA took this decision after receiving requests from oil companies such as Hindustan Petroleum,Bharat Petroleum and Indian Oil to improve security of their establishments.
As per the oil companies,their complexes will be easily visible from the freeway,which will be about 8.5 m in height.
The companies had also sought opinion of the Mumbai Police in this matter. Police officials have also observed that these establishments can be very vulnerable to terror attacks by throwing of hand grenades or other ammunition from the Eastern Freeway, said Jaywant Dhane,executive engineer at the MMRDA.
On the eastern side,the MMRDA will install view barriers from Sewri railway station to nearly Mahul while on the western side barriers will stretch from Veg Oil junction in Wadala to near Mahul.
Since the Eastern Freeway will be a toll-free road without any signals the MMRDA is also installing crash barriers made of metal beam on both sides of the divider.
The crash barriers are being installed for the entire length of the corridor for about Rs 5 crore,a provision included in the contract.
The MMRDA had last week launched the last segment on the Eastern Freeway,which was under-construction since 2008.
The freeway is now expected to be completed by May 2013. The road,being constructed at Rs 750 crore,has been contracted to Simplex Infrastructure.
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