Observing that the heavy traffic brought in by the sea link is causing air and noise pollution at Worli Seaface, the National Green Tribunal, in its order released on Wednesday, asked the Delhi-based Central Road Research Institute to conduct studies and recommend a traffic plan or solution to help bring pollution under permissible levels.
“We deem it proper, under the circumstances, to appoint the Central Road Research Institute to examine the situation by visiting the place and doing research by involving the transport, planning and environment science departments," the tribunal said.
"The institute will be required to give its report, including feasibility of construction of tunnel/underpass for underground drifting of the traffic, if it is feasible, from the end point of Bandra-Worli Sea Link at the appropriate place where it reaches the T Point,” it added.
The institute has been asked to submit an immediate and long-term feasible solution within a month and a final report within four months.
Apart from state agencies, the institute will also hear the grievances of the residents. “The institute also shall hear the appellants and other residents of the locality, whosoever may have any grievances/suggestions for the use of the road adjacent to Worli Sea face. Thereafter, the tribunal will hear the parties and pass further orders,” said the tribunal.
Dileep Nevatia, who filed the application, has welcomed the idea.
"We do expect the study to be comprehensive and suggest immediate and long-term solutions to abatement of pollution at Worli Sea Face. As this study will be the first-of-its-kind for such projects, its outcome cannot be predicted. However, I am positive about both the study and its implementation," he said.
"What is more important is that such study may also be made a part of the environmental clearance process of future projects, such as the Peddar Road flyover and other proposed sea links, so that fait accompli situations are not repeated."