The 6.5-km-long flyover will reduce the time taken to travel from Santacruz to Chembur by motorists to just 15 to 20 minutes

Mumbai : The decade-long wait of Mumbaikars has finally come to an end, as the crucial double-decker Santacruz-Chembur Link Road (SCLR) will be finally thrown open to motorists on Friday.

The SCLR along with Amar Mahal Junction flyover will be thrown open to the public from 8 am. There is no official function due to the code of conduct which is in effect. The 6.5-km-long flyover will reduce the time taken to travel from Santacruz to Chembur to just 15 to 20 minutes.

A Right to Information activist, Anil Galgali, said, “ It is was a very crucial project that has been finally completed though after a lot of delay. The MMRDA authorities should learn from mistakes done during this project and work accordingly.” The delay in the construction of the double-decker flyover has resulted in a cost escalation of Rs 350 crore as the cost had gone up from Rs 163.8 crore to Rs 504 crore.

The flyover will provide easy connectivity to commuters, heading towards Lokmanya Tilak Terminus (LTT) and also reduce congestion at Sion, Dharavi, Vakola and Kurla. While the SCLR is being thrown open days before the city goes to vote, transport experts feel that the incomplete work on the connecting road to the flyover will prove to be a bottleneck.

Jeetendra Gupta, a member with the Citizens Transport Committee, said, “The incomplete road widening work at CST road will prove to be a bottleneck with the opening of the flyover. The work on the University Road has started just a fortnight back and will take at least another month to be completed while the SCLR has been thrown open just before the elections.”

The heavy traffic flow that will come in with the double-decker flyover will cause congestion at these roads while as many as two lakh vehicles are expected to use it everyday.

Whereas Rishi Aggarwal, a fellow at the Observers Research Foundation, said, “Though finally the construction work on the flyover is completed, it will create bottlenecks at the Vakola pipeline as the roads narrow down to two-lane which will be a major trouble. It is just a case of too little too late. It took a decade for the project to be completed which has changed the situation drastically.”

Town planning expert, Vivek Pai, said, “Other projects were given priority over the SCLR which was left hanging though the Rehabilitation and Redevelopment (R & R) has been shown as the problem.”

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