The construction of Mumbai Metro’s line 3 has led to a 200m stretch on Lamington Road, which connects Dadar and Girgaon Chowpatty, being dug up one lane and barricaded on the other. This has resulted in half of the shops being shut. Also affected are the pedestrians.
Location: Lamington Road, near the Grant Road railway station in south Mumbai.
Project: Mumbai Metro’s line 3, also known as Colaba-Bandra-Seepz Line, which is a 33.5-km underground metro corridor running along Colaba-Bandra-SEEPZ. The corridor has 27 key stations, out of which 26 will be underground.
Dug-up for: Construction of the underground Grant Road Metro station.
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Implementing agency: Mumbai Metro Rail Corporation Ltd, a joint venture of the central governments and the Maharashtra government.
Importance: Mumbai Metro’s line 3 would be running along the Colaba-Bandra-SEEPZ corridor connecting Mumbai’s key financial hubs. Once implemented, MML-3 would reduce traffic by about 35 per cent or by 4.5 lakh vehicles leading to the decongestion of roads and the travel time would be reduced to 50 minutes from 100 minutes on the route.
Total initial cost: Rs 23,000 crore
Revised cost till now: Rs 33,000 crore +
Work started in: 2016
Initial deadline for completion: June 2022
Expected completion: after 2024
Reasons cited for delays: slow pace of work by the contractor
How local businesses are feeling the pinch
Jahid Shaikh, who works in a tyre shop on the road, said, “The road has been dead since the work started as the motorists are not travelling on the road and those travelling cannot stop and come to the shop. Our 90 per cent business and income has been affected. They earlier said the work would be completed within three years but it has not been completed even after five years and they are now saying it will take three more years. How can one whose livelihood depends on the shops can live?
Nawab Saudagar, who has been running a sticker shop on the ground floor of a building and stays on its upper floor for the past 60 years, said, “My business depends on the movement of people on the road. But since the work has started, a barricade has been put up and my shop is not visible. My regular customers are finding it difficult to reach the shop as there is no parking space. Nor can vehicles be stopped on the road. Our incomes have taken a hit but the government or the implementing agency has not given us any compensation.” Saudagar also said that when the shopkeepers complained they were told that they should be grateful for being allowed to open their shops.
A jewellery shop owner said, “The business has been affected so much that it is better to keep the shop shut. Our business now depends on old and regular customers; there are no new customers.
Lucky Patel, a resident, said, “Now there is no construction work because of the rain. But in winter and summer, the work goes on at night as well and the noise is unbearable. The resident cannot sleep at all. Whenever we complain, we are told “it is government work”.