Mumbai

Aarey Metro 3 car shed: four-member team visits alternative sites, to submit report in 15 days

‘Any move would lead to escalation of cost, delay in commissioning work’

The committee formed to explore and suggest alternative locations for the Mumbai Metro 3 car shed visited the proposed site at Aarey on Tuesday as well as two potential alternatives sites at Kanjurmarg and Jogeshwari.

The State government had set up a four-member committee to identify viable options to the existing car shed site of Mumbai Metro 3 at Aarey Milk Colony on December 11. Officials who were part of Tuesday’s site visits said any move would lead to an escalation of cost and would delay in commissioning the project as work at the current site was already on, while the other two sites would involve several logistical and potentially legal hurdles before they could even start. Officials said that there were trees on approximately six hectares on the site, which MMRCL was not planning to cut.

Kanjurmarg has been suggested as an option by environmental activists as a combined car shed for Metro 3 and Metro 6. According to the MMRCL website there was a title dispute on the plot pending in Bombay High Court since 1974 involving private parties and the State government. The plot in Jogeshwari currently has a camp of the State reserve police force (SRPF) and has residential blocks and training facility for the personnel. This plot was never part of MMRCL’s potential alternative sites and has been added only after National Congress Party MLA and Mumbai unit president Nawab Malik suggested it on Twitter.

According to MMRCL, four sites had been considered while drawing up the detailed project report (DPR) and five more had been considered at the technical committee stage. During the DPR stage in addition to the current location at Aarey, MMRCL looked at Mahalaxmi Racecourse, MMRDA ground in BKC, and Kalina University.

A Technical Committee set up in 2015 to look for alternative sites included Backbay Reclamation, Mumbai Port Trust, Dharavi, Sariput Nagar, and Kanjurmarg. The four-member committee will be visiting all the above sites before submitting its findings. According to NGO Vanashakti, the sites at Kalina and BKC were the most suitable as they already had stations planned there.

The State government has directed the committee to complete the task within 15 days. It has also asked the members to examine whether due procedure was followed before the 2,100 trees on the site were cut between October 4 and October 6. The committee will also suggest ways to protect Aarey Colony from future damage.

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Printable version | Mar 28, 2020 6:48:30 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/mumbai/metro-3-car-shed-four-member-team-visits-alternative-sites-to-submit-report-in-15-days/article30343059.ece

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