Ten years ago work on the Santa Cruz-Chembur Link Road had begun and it is only later this week and just few days before Mumbai goes to vote that the road will be opened for public use.
Work on the Santa Cruz-Chembur Link Road, a missing road, had begun in September 2003, but the ground work finally took off in 2007, thereafter, the project has witnessed numerous hurdles, repeated deadline revisions and cost escalation. The initial cost was Rs163.8 crore, which is now Rs504 crore, that is an increase of 350 per cent.
During the construction of this missing link, it was decided to add the Amar Mahal Junction Flyover to troubleshoot traffic at the Amar Mahal Junction Flyover on the Eastern Express Highway.
According to Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority's (MMRDA) spokesperson Dilip Kawathkar, "Final touches are being given to the 3.5 km long link road."
"We will soon announce the date of it's opening. But there will not be any fanfare," said UPS Madan, metropolitan commissioner of MMRDA.
The link will be opened only by this weekend, as bitumen work is pending at the Chembur end of the link road. Apart from this, even street lights have not been installed. The plan is to open the road just days before the city goes for vote despite some incomplete works. The Santa Cruz end of the link road starts from Vakola on the Western Express Highway and snakes through Kalina-CST Road-Tilak Nagar-Amar Mahal and finally end on the Eastern Express Highway at Chembur.
Aimed to decongest the existing arterial roads, with its opening the traffic snarls is likely to ease at Amar Mahal, Kurla, Kalanagar, Sion and Dharavi. The travelling time too will reduce from 60 minutes to 20 minutes. It has a double decker flyover.
This is one of the India's most delayed road project. In 2010, World Bank India's then head Roberto Zagha, had said that Santa Cruz-Chembur Link Road is the world's most delayed road project funded by them.
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