Maharashtra’s Deputy Chief Minister last Friday announced Mumbai Metro’s 33.5 km Line-3 (Aqua Line) will be extended southward from Cuffe Parade to Navy Nagar in Colaba.
Per a source in the state government that spoke with ToI, the Indian Navy through the Ministry of Defence requested for this “2.5 km extension”:
“The ministry of defence had requested the state government to operate Metro-3 services from Navy Nagar. The proposal was referred to the executing agency, Mumbai Metro Corporation Ltd (MMRCL), whose board has given approval for the extension. The final terminal station in south Mumbai at Navy Nagar will come up near the Tata Institute of Fundamental Research Centre (TIFR).
The detailed project report will be prepared after an agency is appointed. Thereafter, tenders will be floated for construction of 5km (2.5km each, in the up and down directions) extension and the station. We may have to spend around Rs 2,500-Rs 3,000 crore on the extension”
Here’s my quick purely fictional take on how the extension might look like:
Cuffe Parade Station is under construction by L&T – STEC JV and comes with 190 meter NATM-built stabling lines at the extreme southern-end of its 405 meter station box – see details & images here.
The distance from Cuffe Parade Station to Tata Institute of Fundamental Research Centre (TIFR) actually comes out to be roughly 1.6 km.
I’m surprised this request was made by the Ministry of Defence which has typically shied away or stalled ongoing metro projects (eg. Kolkata, Delhi, Bengaluru etc.) from passing through or near cantonments and installations.
Anyhow, from here on, a detailed project report (DPR) will need to be prepared which will then go through the motions of approvals with funding being secured parallelly. I don’t see construction starting until at least 2026.
This small extension is futile in the grand scheme of things without the elephant in the room – the line’s train maintenance depot – being addressed. That critical piece is missing ever since 2019-2020 when the state government put Aarey Depot’s work on-hold and conjured building a combined mega depot at Kanjurmarg which is nowhere near the design stage.
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Hat-tip: Abhijeet Sharma