Maharashtra govt to shift the Mumbai metro rail car shed from Aarey

Our Bureau Mumbai | Updated on October 11, 2020 Published on October 11, 2020

A file photo of the Metro car shed construction site at Aarey   -  REUTERS

The project was the centre of controversy in 2019

The Maharashtra government has decided that it will shift the metro rail car shed from Aarey in Western suburbs of Mumbai to Eastern suburbs of Kanjumarg.

At the new site, land is being provided free of cost to the Mumbai Metro Rail Corporation Ltd, said Chief Minister of Maharashtra Uddhav Thackeray on Sunday.

He was addressing the people of Maharashtra via a web link. Ever since the outbreak of the pandemic, Thackeray has been intermittently addressing the people on Sunday afternoons updating about the various decisions taken by the State Government.

The Metro rail car shed from Aarey was vehemently opposed by environmentalists due to the presence of a large number of trees at the site. They took a view that it was a degraded forest, which needed to be saved. Their contention was that destruction of the habitat in Aarey could lead to an enhanced flooding of the Mithi river. It is also the last major green patch in the city. The forest land of Aarey helps in moderating the ambient temperatures in the city, as continuous use of concrete for construction creates “heat sinks”, which adds to the sweltering weather of the city.

Inspite the opposition, the previous Fadnavis government pushed ahead with its site selection, which led to large number of trees being felled. Aarey became a major election issue in 2019 with a number of parties, including the Shiv Sena opposing the site. Thackeray said that at Aarey only a building costing about ₹100 crore has been constructed, which will be used for other purposes. Kanjurmarg site will be used for the car shed, which will serve line 3 and 6 of the Metro corridor.

Covid situation

Thackeray said that a lot of people in the State are behaving irresponsibly in the fight against the pandemic by not wearing the masks in public places. A situation should not be created where the State government has to reimpose a lockdown.

He added that in Mumbai more services of suburban railway would be starting soon and efforts would be made to avoid crowding.

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Published on October 11, 2020
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