The Mumbai Nagpur Samruddhi Expressway will be turned into a green corridor. The Maharashtra State Road Development Corporation (MSRDC) which is taking care of this E-way construction work has decided to plant 12.68 lakh trees along the road. This is more than what was guaranteed to the environment department, as earlier it was decided to plant 8.60 lakh trees. Besides this, 12.87 lakh small plants and shrubs will be planted on the median of the e-way and 3.21 lakh shrubs will be planted inside the compound wall. The project will cost approximately Rs 900 crore, which also includes the cost of maintenance of plants and trees for seven years. The trees and plants will be watered using drip-irrigation technology. Also, each tree will be geo-tagged and hence the cost of drip irrigation and geo-tagging is included in it.
Chandrakant Pulkundwar, Joint Managing Director, MSRDC, said, "Samruddhi will be the first e-way to have such a system in place. Commuters will just not experience smooth journey but will also see greenery while passing through the expressway." The MSRDC has already appointed a separate expert agency to monitor the plantation and survival of trees. It will submit its report to the authority regularly, asserted Pulkundwar.
The 700-km long expressway with three lanes on both the sides, once ready, will reduce the travel time between Nagpur and Mumbai by six hours and thousands of vehicles are expected to use the corridor. Besides, emphasising on the plantation work, MSRDC is also exploring the opportunity to promote small business alongside the e-way. It is offering land parcels on lease model to develop amenities along the route.
The Rs 32,000 crore corridor will be open for public by September 2022. While the Phase 1- Nagpur to Shirdi is expected to open on May 1, as announced earlier.