Mumbai to gear up for major disruptions as Army, Railways brace to finish the Repairs/Revamping of FOBs

MUMBAI: Be prepared for a tough travel time on Central and Western Railways in the next two weeks, that too close to peak hours. The Indian Railways and Army are finalising dates for blocks of 5-6 hours on all days for finishing work of the foot over bridges of Elphinstone Road, Currey Road and Ambivli.

The deadline for completing the three FOBs is January 31.

Officials the Bombay Sappers Group of the Indian Army and the railways met on January 13 to discuss the blocks on weekdays. Sources said a jumbo block would be imposed on January 18 at Ambivli, and at Elphinstone Road on January 21.

“We will be giving a 6-hour block on January 18 at Ambivli that will start in the morning hours. There has been several smaller blocks that is undergoing for many days now,” said a senior CR official.

This block is most likely to start at 10 am at Ambivli station where work on new FOB is being carried out by the Army. On the extended suburbs beyond Kalyan, there is a train every 5-7 minutes and this work would have severe effect on train’s punctuality and also lead to cancellation of at least 100 services. The CR officials said that they want to see the probable repercussions that it could have if taken during peak hours.

The block at Ambivli station – that comes on Kalyan-Kasara route – is expected to go for at least 5 hours. This station is close to Kalyan and once the work starts, their could be problems in smooth operations of train movement between Titwala and Kasara stations. The Ambivli FOB is being built at a cost of Rs 4 crore which will be nearly 250 meters long and 3-4 meters wide.

Similarly, the Western Railway are finalising tentative date of January 21 for a major block at Elphinstone Road-Parel. Sources said that the Army has till now been utilising the 5th line and area around that for the FOB work however now they will enter the Main lines which will have an effect on both slow and fast lines towards Churchgate and Borivali ends.

Normally work on the FOB goes on for 2.5-3 hours during late nights that is upto 4am. However sources said that this work will go for 5-6 hours on January 21. “This would ideally mean that work will get extended till 7am. Minor works have been underway and blocks are provided as asked by the Army,” said a WR official.Pic for representation. The deadline for completing the FOBs is January 31

This is expected to affect the pre-peak hour rail traffic leading to cancellation of around 40 services. The railway officials are hoping that there is no breach in time taken for completing the works else it would further have severe repercussions on the system. The FOB at Elphinstone Road-Parel is being built at Rs 5.7 crore and is extending from existing Parel FOB with landing near Dadar flower market. Meanwhile the block timings for the Rs 3.7 crore worth Currey Road FOB is not decided yet. This is expected to take time as recently the authorities managed to procure private land for FOB’s landing.

MEGA BLOCKS

  • Sources said a jumbo block would be imposed on January 18 at Ambivli, and at Elphinstone Road on January 21
  • Similarly, the Western Railway are finalising tentative date of January 21 for a major block at Elphinstone Road-Parel
  • The blocks are expected to be in force for 5-6 hrs during peak traffic.

The Western Railway (WR) has widened a Foot Over Bridge (FOB) at suburban Borivali station in a “record two months time”, a senior official claimed today. “Gone are the days when the various infrastructural projects of the Railways were often entangled in procedural hassles, thereby delaying the work and escalating the cost,” WR spokesperson Ravinder Bhakar said. “Now, the WR has proved that passenger safety is of utmost priority and it is evident by the completion of widening work of the FOB at Borivali station in record two months,” he added. After the September 29 stampede at the FOB linking suburban Elphinstone Road and Parel stations, the railways received flak from all quarters. “The extension of 12m wide FOB and widening by 3m at Borivali at a total cost of Rs 2.35 crore was sanctioned by General Manager on out of turn basis. This tender was opened on November 14 last year and the work began from November 19. “Our engineers have completed this task in a record time of two months and the FOB is set to be opened on January 20,” the spokesperson added.

He said this would benefit the commuters. Borivali station is one of the major stations of WR as several outstation trains halt there. It is also one of the terminus station for suburban trains.

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