Plan to alter Virar-Alibaug corridor alignment, make way for ‘New Thane’

The Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) plans to alter the alignment of the planned Virar-Alibaug Multi Modal Corridor near Thane to make way for a 'New Thane,' as proposed by the Thane Municipal Corporation.

The Thane Municipal Corporation, along with the MMRDA and Ney & Paullsen, a Belgian consultant, has come up with the plan to create 'New Thane' in the non-agricultural land, which is 100 sq m in area between Ghodbunder Road in Thane and Vasai Creek.

"For this, the whole alignment of the Multi Modal Corridor in this area will need to be altered as it passes through the 100 sq m area. With the alteration in alignment, the corridor will probably be more expensive because we had frozen on the most cost-effective route," said Rahul Asthana, metropolitan commissioner at the MMRDA, adding that details have to be worked out.

"We are thinking of taking the corridor further west to skirt the Vasai Creek. The Belgian consultant wants us to take the corridor further westwards near the railway line. We will ask the project consultants for the Multi Modal Corridor to see the best way to address the situation," Asthana said.

He said that the issue will not delay the Multi Modal Corridor project and that the MMRDA, along with the project consultant, will work out an alternative alignment in four months. The MMRDA is also waiting for the state government to pass an amendment in the town planning scheme, which will help MMRDA in reducing the cost of land acquisition for the project, before proceeding with the project. Once the amendment is passed, it will be possible to make the project-affected people the stakeholders by developing land adjoining the alignment of the corridor and giving them plots on the developed land.

The MMRDA aims to complete the first phase of the Multi Modal Corridor from Navghar in Virar to Chirner by 2018. This phase will connect major towns such as Virar, Bhiwandi, Kalyan, Dombivli, Panvel and Uran.

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