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Bandra-Worli Sea-link opens in Mumbai

June 30, 2009

After 10 years of expectations, delays and, of course, hardcore planning and labour, the spectacular Bandra-Worli Sea Link is set to open at midnight on Tuesday. Come Wednesday morning and a new day will dawn for Mumbai’s rush-hour motorists, with the Rs 750-crore link offering a new route between the island city and the western suburbs. Till now, the Mahim Causeway was the only route.

Bandra-Worli sea link in Mumbai

Bandra-Worli sea link in Mumbai

A fireworks, lights and laser show, coupled with music, was held on Monday night at the main cable-stayed bridge at the Bandra end. It was enjoyed by thousands from the Bandra promenade and Mahim beach, but was not clearly visible to those at Worli sea face and Dadar due to slight drizzles, haze and cloudiness. There was no space left at the sea-faces as thousands gathered to view the show, but those at Worli were disappointed, said Anandini Mulgaonkar and Shubha Sehgal of Worli and Bandra, respectively.

From 12.01 am onwards on Wednesday, officials are expecting joyriders to take the link before office-goers arrive in larger numbers as morning peak hour nears. With no toll from July 1 to July 5, a large amount of traffic is expected. The traffic police will face a daunting task at Worli and Bandra.

Bandra-Worli Sea-Link Map

Bandra-Worli Sea-Link Map

Maharashtra State Road Development Corporation (MSRDC) engineers said the toll-free move is at the behest of politicians seeking political mileage.

An automatic system will identify vehicles going over the 50 kmph limit. MSRDC engineers said cameras on the link can take swift 360-degree turns and capture images of vehicles within 1.5 km. Two cameras fitted under the cable-stayed portions of the link will keep watch on the movements of boats and ships.

While work on beautifying the promenade at Bandra has begun, plans for the highest fountain in the country are on the backburner, but floating fountains may be ready in about six months.

Traffic curbs at Bandra
All vehicles will be prohibited on the road to the sea link at the Bandra end as well as K C Marg (Reclamation) on Tuesday from 3 to 8 pm. Traffic police will allow only vehicles engaged in essential and emergency services and the vehicles of invitees to the sea link’s opening. People travelling to Chapel Road, Mehboob Circle, Bandstand, Chimbai and Carter Road will have to use S V Road or Hill road. Parking restrictions will be implemented on sea link road, K C Marg, A K Vaidya Marg and adjoining roads. TNN

A NORTH-SOUTH LINK
Mahim Causeway is currently the only route that connects the western suburbs and island city. The Bandra-Worli Sea Link will be the second major route.

MATTER OF MINUTES
Currently, it takes 35 to 38 minutes to go the 7.7-km distance between Mahim flyover and Love Grove Junction, Worli. Transport experts estimate that travelling the link plus its approach and exit roads, which also measure about 7.7 km, will take at least 25 minutes. The builders claim that travelling the 4.7-km main link will take just 6 minutes.

PAYING THE TOLL
FREE: From July 1 to July 5
BASIC FEE: Car or SUV | Rs 50 | Mini bus or mini truck | Rs 75 | Bus or truck Rs 100
PASSES: Daily travel: (2-way ) | 1.5 times basic toll
Daily travel: (multiple entries) | 2.5 times basic toll
Monthly pass: (all vehicles) | 50 times basic toll
Note: Buses will be charged Re 1 extra for each commuter ticket

PAYMENT MODES
Manual payment: 30 seconds
Swipe card (for monthly passes): 20 seconds On-board-unit electronic payment: 10 to 12 seconds

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