Mumbai: The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has declined taking possession of 24 flyovers and four subways, given by the Maharashtra State Road Development Corporation (MSRDC) for repair purposes, without acquiring advertisement or mobile tower rights.
Earlier, to break traffic congestion in the city, MSRDC had handed over 24 flyover bridges and four subways along with Eastern Express Highway (EEH) and Western Express Highway (WEH) to BMC for the purpose of repair. During Shivsena-BJP’s reign in the 1990s, with the assistance of MMRDA and MSRDC, a total of 55 flyover bridges were built.
On the other hand, every year, BMC’s repair and maintenance department comes under question for pothole-riddled roads. BMC sought official possession of all Mumbai roads a few months ago in order to make them pothole-free within two months.
CM Shinde directs MMRDA and MSRDC
Now, CM Eknath Shinde has directed MMRDA and MSRDC to hand over possession of these flyovers and subways to BMC. Accordingly, MMRDA has allowed BMC to repair 24 flyovers and four subways, the Eastern Express Highway (EEH), and the Western Express Highway (WEH).
Now, BMC has refused to take any possession of EEH, WEH, 24 flyover bridges, or four subway lines. Additional Municipal Commissioner, P Velrasu, said to FPJ, “We have received their letters, but we are not going to take official possession of the flyovers and highways.” To generate revenue, we are seeking advertisement rights and mobile tower rights as well. “We are ready to take on the whole responsibility, but we are being given only liabilities.”
BMC is not experienced in repairing highways
Thousands of crores are required to maintain these roads and bridges. BMC has experience maintaining two-lane internal roads, but EEH and WEH are bigger paths with four to five lanes. Apart from that, there is a service road along with these highways. So it is difficult for BMC to manage the expenses of these highways and bridges.
According to Velrasu, EEH and WEH highways are 500 km wide and it needs huge money for repair and maintenance.
“BMC also needs revenue from these highways and flyover bridges. Advertisement and mobile tower rights will be used to bear expenses and maintenance. We have written a letter to the state government pertaining to these,” he added.
A senior official of MSRDC said, “TThe process of handing over the flyovers to BMC is on.” When he was asked about the advertisement rights, he said, “All issues are being discussed by the competent authorities.”
Flyover names which MSRDC claimed have been handed over to BMC
Jogeshwari- Vikhroli Flyover,
Vikhroli Junction Flyover,
Andheri Ghatkopar link road Flyover,
Chheda Nagar flyover,
Suman nagar railway under bridge,
Jaycoach JVLR flyover,
Rani Sati marg subway,
Dutta pada flyover,
National park flyover,
Land T flyover,
Kanjurmarg padestrian bridge,
BARC junction flyover,
Mankhurd CMLR flyover,
Love grove flyover,
Mahim Interchange flyover,
Elphinstone flyover, Ferguson flyover.