Mumbai: Leaks In Newly Opened Coastal Road Tunnel Raise Safety Concerns

Mumbai: Leaks In Newly Opened Coastal Road Tunnel Raise Safety Concerns

This coastal road tunnel is notable for being the first in India constructed using tunnel boring technology.

RUCHA KANOLKARUpdated: Monday, May 27, 2024, 11:35 PM IST
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Municipal Commissioner Bhushan Gagrani visited the coastal road tunnel, inspected the site, and instructed the engineers to expedite the work. | FPJ (Rucha Kanolkar)

Mumbai: Two months after a section of Mumbai’s Coastal Road tunnel was opened to traffic on March 11, water leaks have been observed. Water is seeping through the walls and ceiling, particularly at the southbound tunnel’s end near Princess Street Flyover. This issue persists despite prior repairs made during testing.

Leaks are visible on both sides of the walls in the southbound tunnel, with the slab above also appearing wet. The constant water leakage has caused the paint on the walls to peel off. The BMC is facing scrutiny as it plans to open another tunnel soon. The adjacent northbound tunnel, still under construction, is expected to open in June. The persistent leaks, first noted during testing and supposedly repaired, have reappeared within two months of the tunnel’s inauguration.

A senior official from the Coastal Road project said, “These are not cracks but expansion joints located every 20-30 meters, allowing for contraction and expansion. The leakage is occurring through these joints. We will employ injection waterproofing and grouting to seal the leaks immediately. This issue arises during construction or due to equipment use, but once addressed, no further leakage will occur. The water has dispersed, which is why the colour has also come off.”

This Coastal Road tunnel is notable for being the first in India constructed using tunnel boring technology. The entire coastal road from Mumbai to Kandivali spans 29km, with the completed phase in South Mumbai covering 10.58km. The project has cost approximately Rs12,721 crore.

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