DHARAM DHUTIA Mumbai
In a bid to increase the interconnectivity of the citys second largest commercial hub, the Bandra Kurla Complex ( BKC), representatives from corporate offices in BKC met the officials from Mumbai Metropolitan R
egion Development Authority ( MMRDA) which is the special planning authority ( SPA) of the area. ” We discussed the possibility of special buses to improve the internal transport, as well as connectivity to Bandra and Kurla stations running on Compressed Natural Gas ( CNG),” said Rahul Asthana, MMRDA Commissioner.
More than one lakh people work in BKC and depend on BEST or auto- rickshaws for their daily travel. There are also share rickshaws available near the station, which charge fixed rates. While the proposal for buses is welcome, the major problem would be to find a suitable operator. Thats because neither MMRDA, nor corporate offices want to handle the operations. ” We would approach BEST management and tell them to operate them, as they have the expertise. Also, if we give it to any private operator, there are chances of conflict with BEST,” Asthana said.
BKC houses many government offices like MMRDA, Income tax, Sales tax, Reserve Bank of India as well as many private offices, including National Stock Exchange, ICICI Bank, SBI and Standard Chartered Bank.
However, the area doesnalt39t have any alternate system of transport, and, barring a few executive level officers, most people have to depend on public transport.
In January, 2010, a similar system to increase the mobility within the business district was planned. However, at that time, a tram was planned instead of a bus. But due to high costs involved, the project never saw the light of day.