Centre mulls Rs90,000-cr plan for tunnel ring road in Mumbai

15 Dec 2014


The union government is planning to build an underground ring road in Mumbai that could be linked to the proposed Ahmedabad-Mumbai highway. The cost of the tunnel ring road project is initially estimated at Rs90,000 crore.

Tunel''To improve connectivity and at the same time ensure that the scenic beauty of the city is not disturbed while creating bridges and roads, we are considering building a tunnel road that would go up to the proposed Ahmedabad-Mumbai highway,'' union roads and transport minister Nitin Gadkari said on Sunday.

He said the highway project, which has been on the back burner as there is a new proposal for a Surat-Mumbai elevated road, will be revived.

''We have carried out the feasibility study and also decided the alignment of the Surat-Mumbai highway. But it is still not finalised whether we will go ahead with the project or not. In meanwhile, we are also thinking about creating a tunnel ring road that will go up to the pending proposal of Ahmedabad-Mumbai highway,'' he said.

Gadkari said the idea of the tunnel road came to him on a visit to Holland. ''I saw the tunnel connecting Notre Dame to Belgium and this gave me the idea of constructing a tunnel road in the city,'' the minister said.

One section of the proposed tunnel road would start from the Mahim Creek in the central part of the city and connect the Bandra-Worli sealink on the western fringe and also connect the business hub of Nariman Point.

Another section will begin from Sewre on the eastern periphery of the island city and extend undersea to connect the JNPT at Nhava Seva across the bay and will also connect the Mumbai Port on the eastern cost. The road will enjoin the proposed Mumbai-Ahmedabad highway from Bhayandhar on the northwestern periphery of the city, he said.

Gadkari further said initial estimate on the cost of construction is around Rs90,000 crore and said fund is not an issue. But he was quick to add that bringing down the cost is a priority and accordingly the government will be appointing a consultant for this.

''We are studying ways to ensure the cost comes down to at least Rs. 60,000 crore,'' he added.

He also assured that necessary assistance from the government would be provided to make the project financially viable.

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