घाटकोपार Ghatkopar (GC): Though the Versova-Andheri-Ghatkopar Metro will improve east-west connectivity, there is a slight catch The Ghatkopar railway station and the Ghatkopar Metro station are not connected to each other despite being side by side.
This means railway commuters wanting to switch over to the Metro will have to get down from the skywalk and climb another flight of 25 steps to the Metro station.
Further, people living in Ghatkopar east will have to buy a railway platform ticket to use the railway foot overbridge leading to the west, where the Metro station is situated.
These lapses were pointed out by the Citizens Transport Forum (CTF) to MMRDA commissioner U P S Madan two months ago. They have yet to get a reply. On Sunday, the CTF invited journalists to see it for themselves.
Said Jitendra Gupta of the CTF, “They could have easily connected the metro station to the skywalk. People using the skywalk could have easy access to the metro station and it would have also reduced the crowd below on the streets.’’ He wondered what kind of planning had been done.
The road outside the Metro station has a bus stand, rickshaw stand and an informal pavement market. The CTF wondered how the Metro passengers would enter/exit the station from this congested road.
P N Shridharan, another member of the CTF, said, “Ideally, the Metro and the railway station should display each other’s indicators for the benefit of the commuters. If in the High Court we can get to know which cases are being heard in other courts, why cannot the same be done at a station?”
The CTF said that there was no coordination between the various transport bodies. For instance, the BEST has yet to change its bus stops or to start feeder routes. The MMRDA, which is supposed to be a planning body had failed to achieve coordination between the various transport bodies, they said.
Amit Biswas, PRO of the Mumbai Metro One Pvt Ltd, which built the Metro, said, “Connectivity between Metro and the Railways are conceived and planned by the MMRDA as part of their planning obligation. Metro as concessioner follows the plan of MMRDA as per the concessioner Agreement.”