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The elevated road was conceptualized as there was no direct access to the International Airport. Now, this very soon-to-be-completed Sahar Elevated Road will facilitate easier and quicker access to the travelers proceeding to and from the Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport (CSIA). This elevated road provides direct connectivity between the Western Express Highway and Terminal-2 of CSIA to be commissioned shortly.
The Elevated Road is 2.20km long and 27.5m wide providing 3 lanes each for up and down traffic. There will be two lanes each joining elevated road from southern and northern side. And there will be three lanes from Terminal-2 to proceed towards southern and northern side via WEH.
The signal-free elevated road starts from WEH at Hanuman road junction, Vile Parle (East) and reaches directly to Terminal-2. This was a complete missing link and reaching CSIA was a cumbersome travel as the approach roads to CSI Airport are very narrow and congested. A distance of about 4-5 km from WEH to the Airport would require about 40-45 minutes crossing through Sambhaji Nagar, Rajaram Wadi, NAD Colony, Dr.Babasaheb Ambedkar Nagar, Bamanwada, Sahar Post and Telegraph Colony, GVK Residential Colony and further on the busy Sahar road at Marol Pilpeline junction.
However, the new Elevated Road will reach commuters to the CSI Airport from WEH in a mere 4-5 minutes, besides affording a very pleasing driving experience to the motorists. The road is provided with planters for landscaping and arboriculture on either side – probably first time in India – what with beautiful Palm trees and shrubs being planted to offer soothing greens in an otherwise concretized jungle.
Of course, the construction of this many-faceted road faced a few impediments such as Resettlement and Rehabilitation of project affected families, non-availability of land from various government departments, difficulties in diverting traffic as also shifting and relaying various underground utilities. Also, the construction had to be carried out only during restricted working hours owing to the close proximity of the construction site with the runway.
The elevated portion (1300m) was completed as per the schedule. However, the remaining part of the project involved resettlement and rehabilitation of hundreds of project affected families. It meant resettlement of the slums on the Airport land and residential colonies of Post & Telegraph Department, hutments and buildings in Airport Authority/GVK Colony etc. This also meant non-availability of land from various agencies such Department of Post &Telegraph, CPWD, Airport Authority of India, MIAL etc. It required consistent correspondence with the Central Government. There were a few religious structures too which required resettlement. The MMRDA, besides successfully resettling more than 750 families, resettled religious structures including a Buddha Vihar, a Church and a Temple.
The Authority also shifted and relayed number of underground utilities besides providing separate underground utilities for Bamanwada and Ambedkar Nagar and a water tank for the Airport Colony.
Of course, after prevailing over all the hurdles and stumbling blocks, the 400.77-crore Sahar Elevated Road is nearing completion and will be commissioned very soon. This will also ease traffic congestion on the WEH and more importantly at the Andheri-Kurla Road Junction.
Major structural components of the Project: