More Mumbai Metro Lines cleared

The Maharashtra state cabinet approved the extension of Metro Line 7—Dahisar to Andheri—on both sides. The entire project will be executed by the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority.

To the north it will be known as Metro Line 9—Dahisar to Mira-Bhayander—and to the south as Metro Line 7A—Andheri to Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj International Airport.

Both lines together will cost around Rs.6,600 crore.

Line 7A on airport land will be underground for 2.2 km of the total 3.2 km. The two lines together will have one underground and 10 overground metro stations.

The state government will provide a Rs.1,631 crore interest-free loan to cover Central and state taxes as well as the land cost.

The cabinet also approved the initial ticket charges for travelling on this route.

MMRDA has been allowed to raise loans for the project from bilateral, multilateral agencies, too.

The entire project is expected to be operational by 2022. Initially, 8.5 lakh people are estimated to travel on this route daily and by 2031, 11.2 lakh people are estimated to travel every day.

It will save 30-40 minutes of travel time.

While the original Metro Line 7 was touted to be operational by December 2019, sources said MMRDA is working to get the trial runs started by that time.

Recently, the MMRDA issued a public notice informing that it is required to widen the Western Express Highway at three places since the metro work is causing traffic congestion.

The metro and flyovers have made it difficult for buses to ply, said activist and architect Nitin Killawala.

Killawala further said work on the metro car shed is yet to begin so it is unlikely that it would be operational by 2019.

Metro man E Sreedharan, too, has said the metro in Mumbai must be underground as there is no space for widening of roads.

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