The Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) that takes care of the Western Express Highway (WEH) has planned an underground two-level road and widening of the existing flyover to ease traffic movement.
At present, traffic congestions are observed on the WEH that also connects the international and domestic airports affecting travellers going to airport and vice verse. Therefore, a project of about Rs 167 crore has been planned by the authority facilitating smooth traffic flow with signal free junctions.
On the project, MMRDA Commissioner RA Rajeev said, "It's a vital project as it will decongest the existing traffic on the WEH especially for the people to the international airport and will provide major relief to travellers. At present, the commuters have to face traffic congestion which consumes their precious time. MMRDA envisages easing the road traffic."
At the international (Terminal 2) and domestic (Terminal 1) junction during peak hours, the traffic is more than 10,000 passengers car unit (PCU). Therefore, it was suggested by the consultants that a grade separated underpass should be developed. The report states that currently the traffic from T2 to Bandra side move at grade and some vehicle take slip road, and long distance traffic takes a flyover.
Due to short weaving distance between the left turn point and the flyover, congestion is happening. Hence, direct underpass ramp is provided 1 level and slip road traffic will take left turn at grade.
Similarly, traffic from T2 to Dahisar side has to take first left and then U-turn. This movement is cumbersome and adding to unavoidable traffic to the links. Hence, direct movement through an underpass ramp is provided at 2 level.
Traffic from Bandra to the domestic airport experiences delay due to traffic signal and high volume. Hence, an underpass has been proposed for the same.
The underpass will be of 4 metre height to provide movement of two wheelers, cars and autos while bigger vehicles will move at grade.
A senior MMRDA official said, "Around 18 metre deep underground road will be dug. Interestingly, it is first such two-level underground road constructed anywhere in Mumbai or in state."
The MMRDA has floated two tender for improvement of traffic at T2 costing Rs 111.94 crore while for the improvement of traffic at T1 costing Rs 56 crore on engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) model.