Mumbai: The Mumbai Port Trust (MbPT) has demanded a railway station at Princess Dock in the proposed Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Terminus (CSMT)-Panvel high speed corridor. This elevated corridor on the harbour line of the Mumbai suburban railway is exclusively for air-conditioned electrical multiple units (EMUs).
An MbPT official said, “For the proposed high-speed corridor, the Mumbai Rail Vikas Corporation (MRVC) wants around two kilometres of our land between Yellow Gate and Orange Gate on P D’Mello Road, from where the rail tracks of this corridor will pass. Therefore, we have decided, in exchange for this land, they should give us a station at Princess Dock.”
The proposed CSMT-Panvel high-speed corridor will be 47km long and have 11 stations. As per the MRVC project plan, the corridor will start at Carnac Bunder, near CSMT’s platform No. 18, and pass through Wadi Bunder after going over Mansion Road. From Wadi Bunder, the line will pass along Dockyard Road and continue on the existing CST-Panvel line until Vashi, before turning right towards Palm Beach Road. The line then follows the existing railway line from Belapur before terminating at Panvel.
In October, the MbPT inaugurated a domestic cruise terminal at Purple Gate, Mazgaon Dock. From this terminal, people can take a Mumbai-Goa cruise and dine at two new floating restaurants. Further, the MbPT has also restored the heritage watchtower, which was used to gauge tides in ancient times.
The MbPT official said, “We have floated tenders for the ropeway that will operate between Elephanta Island and Sewri. The eastern waterfront will also have water-taxi and Ropax (an acronym for roll on/roll off passenger. It is a ro-ro vessel built for freight vehicle transport with passenger accommodation) services, a skating rink and a marina. We hope to attract the maximum number of tourists with these facilities. In view of this, we have demanded the railway station. It will provide easy connectivity to the public, especially to those coming from far-off places.”
The MbPT now plans to take up restoration of the heritage Ghadiyal Godi (Godi is a dock for ships) at Princess Dock. “At present, there is no easy access to the Ghadiyal Godi and therefore, there was no progress on the restoration work. Several conservationists have approached us in the past, asking to restore this heritage structure. Now, with the MRVC giving an in-principle nod for a station over here, we can consider taking up the restoration work,” the official said. There are plans to transform the Ghadiyal Godi into a restaurant or a museum.