Mumbai free way. Image Credit: Courtesy Pamela

Mumbai: Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan will finally inaugurate the newly built Eastern Freeway on June 13 after receiving all round criticism for not opening it on time since the Maharashtra government could not get a prominent political leader to find time for the inauguration.

During the past few days the government had to face flak from the public and the media for not opening the Freeway at a time when it would have brought a huge relief to motorists during the heavy rains on Monday.

Now, the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority, which undertook the project, is busy with preparations to deck the freeway on which commuters can zip through the 13.59-km road from Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus in South Mumbai to Chembur, a north-east suburb in a mere 25 minutes without stopping for a single signal. Earlier, it took at least an hour or 90 minutes to cover this distance. The freeway will also provide the much needed speedy connectivity from the island city to the eastern suburbs, Navi Mumbai, Pune and Goa. Apart from reducing travel time and fuel, it will also ease the daily congestion in central and north-central areas of Dadar, Sion and Chembur.

While the 9.29 km of the freeway will be entirely elevated, the 4.3-km Anik Panjarpol Link Road, which will also be inaugurated, provides for a 550-metre long twin tunnel—the first of its kind in an urban set up of the country.

Many have welcomed the Maharashtra government’s decision to throw open the road as it would make a big difference in the life of commuters, particularly during monsoon.