Bhayandar: Nine months after Prime Minister Narendra Modi digitally laid its foundation stone at a ceremony in Bhiwandi, the actual construction work for the much-awaited Metro-9 (Dahisar to Bhayandar) route finally commenced on Sunday.
The contractual agencies that have been deployed for the work started putting up barricades to conduct soil testing at various spots on a stretch of road between Kashimira and Bhayandar.
With a collective price tag of around Rs 5,524 crore, the state cabinet had cleared proposals for the two new metro rail lines in Mumbai, including Metro-9, which will offer connectivity between Dahisar-Mira Road-Bhayandar on a 10.41 kilometers long elevated corridor having nine stations.
Being executed under the aegis of the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA), the project that is expected to take more than three years for completion, had largely remained on paper for around three years.
However, with assembly elections just around the corner, the beginning of metro construction work is all set to boost prospects of the ruling alliance, which faced sharp criticisms for the unprecedented delay.
Presently, commuters largely rely on the heavily-crowded local trains, as the twin-city still lacks an efficient public transport service, thus forcing people to depend on non-metered auto-rickshaws and cabs for their commute.
By Suresh Golani