Mumbai: Later this month, the Mumbai Metro Rail Corporation (MMRC) will appoint a consulting firm to prepare a Detailed Project Report (DPR) to extend Colaba-Bandra-SEEPZ metro line up to Navy Nagar, after the Indian Navy and metro representatives have discussed the project details comprehensively.
According to sources, extending the 33.5 km route to Navy Nagar in Colaba is feasible. "It will take approximately six months to finalise the details of the line’s extension. In mid-2023, a tender will be floated to construct a 2.5-km long extension." Along with DPR, social as well as environmental impact assessments will be carried out.
Extended route will be executed as per security terms
Details on executing the construction have been thoroughly discussed between the MMRC and Indian Navy officials. The line’s extension for public operations will be 1.5-km long and an additional 1km will keep a train on standby as well as for track crossover points.
Navy Nagar being a highly sensitive and secured location, every detail of the extended route will be executed as per security terms laid down by the Ministry of Defence for infrastructure works involving third parties.
In the last few years, the Indian Government does not encourage the participation of Chinese firms. Similarly, all China-based companies will be disallowed to be part of any component of the project. Background checks of each of the individuals working on the extension line will be done prior to recruiting and permitting the person to be part of the project.
Seeing the underground metro line as an opportunity to improve connectivity to Navy Nagar, for defence personnel, the Ministry of Defence approached the MMRC with the plan to have an extension. Later, then Maharashtra’s Deputy Chief Minister and Finance Minister Ajit Pawar announced the underground extension in his 2022-23 budget speech.
At the moment, Cuffe Parade is the originating station in South Mumbai, despite the route being labelled as starting from Colaba.