The Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) will have a green plan along with upgrading the Western Express Highway (WEH) and Eastern Express Highway (EEH). A senior MMRDA official said that it will build rainwater harvesting system below each flyover on both highways. So that the rainwater can flow into these storage tanks which can be used for watering plants and gardens. Besides, it will also set up solar panels, develop cycle track on service road; wherever possible in a bid to encourage last-mile connectivity. Also since the Metro line 7 (Dahisar East to Andheri East ) is passing along the WEH highway, asserted the official.
There are 12 flyovers on EEH and Seven flyovers on WEH. Of which, the first four flyovers in package one on WEH (Mahim causeway to International Airport ) the beautification and rainwater harvesting system work has been initiated.
Interestingly, these green initiatives have been recommended by state Environment Minister Aditya Thackeray, who held a review with officials regarding the various ongoing infrastructure projects on Wednesday.
The MMRDA is undertaking Western and Eastern Highway upgradation work. It proposed Rs 200 crore WEH upgradation work which includes improvement of the main carriageway, slip lane, service road by bituminous treatment, repairing the nullah, widening and constructing the existing subway, improvement of the stormwater drain, footpaths among other activities.
The MMRDA official explained, "Already a contractor has been appointed to the stretch of Mahim Causeway till International Airport on WEH. The said contractor will build, maintain the gardens as per our plan, and in lieu of it, he will get advertisement rights. MMRDA will also get annually Rs 13 crore from the contractor. Similarly, for the remaining two stretches such contractors will be appointed. At present, it is in the tendering process."