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The Jogeshwari – Vikhroli Link Road, commonly referred to by the abbreviation JVLR, is a 10.6 km long road in Mumbai that links Jogeshwari in the Western Suburbs to Vikhroli in the Eastern Suburbs. The JVLR is an important arterial road connecting the Western Express Highway and Eastern Express Highway. The JVLR was opened to traffic in 1994. At the time, it provided the only direct east-west link between these Express Highways. Prior to 1994, the link road was available for traffic only in segments .

The widening and improvement of the JVLR was taken up under the World Bank-funded Mumbai Urban Transport Project (MUTP) in 2002. As a part of the MUTP Road Transport Component programme, the previously 2-lane JVLR was widened to a 6-lane road with a central median. The project was completed in February 2012 at a cost of 221.45 crore(equivalent to 253 crore or US$42 million in 2014).

Route description

The corridor of land adjacent to JVLR on either side is being put to extensive and varied use. As the Iink road is developing into a major network connecting EEH and WEH , the land use pattern along the corridor has under gone a rapid change since it was opened to traffic in 1994. Open and barren wasteland space available in the western and middle sections of JVLR and the marshy land area in the eastern section of JVLR have been converted to residential, commercial and industrial land use pattern, albeit gradually. The entire 10.6 km long JVLR, starting from WEH and ending at EEH , is usually divided into three sections in various study reports, possibly for easy reference and understanding.The sections identified include:

Western sectionEdit

The segment of the JVLR which starts from the WEH junction and ends at the Saki Vihar road junction (near the L&T Factory) is referred to as Section 1 of JVLR. This section being located on the western side is also referred to as the western section of the JVLR. The length of this section is 4.9 km. The original carriageway of the western section of JVLR was a 2-lane road consisting of 7 m wide asphalted carriageway with 2.5m wide shoulders. This was later widened to a 6-lane divided carriageway configuration with a central median. A concrete pavement was also built for the six-lane widened carriageway, and a grade separator was built at SEEPZ road junction. The western section of JVLR passes through a slightly rolling terrain encountering a few steep slopes (max slope being 6.5%).

The western section of the road starts from east of Jay coach Factory near WEH junction. From WEH , the road passes through a series of adjacent residential areas namely, Majeswadi, Pratap Nagar, Anand Nagar, Green fields Society, Durga Nagar and Sariput Nagar. Towards the western end of this section, a commercial recreation park called Fantasy Land is located, on the northern side of JVLR. Towards east of Fantasy land, the JVLR aligns along Kamal Amrohi Studios, State Government-owned Nursery, privately-owned Matoshri Park, SEEPZ Industrial area, BSES Office and Larsen & Toubro (L&T) factory. Between BSES and L&T factory, JVLR crosses over Aarey Farm area, Mithi River , and BMC Water Pipelines. Towards the end of this section, JVLR aligns through Milind Nagar and Tungawa hutments and meets Saki-Vihar Road opposite L&T Gate No 5.

The land use pattern along the western section of the JVLR is predominantly residential, especially the stretch along the western end of the section. Residential areas viz., Majaswadi , Pratapnagar , Anand Nagar , Green Field Society, Durga Nagar and Sariput Nagar are located along the western end of Section I of JVLR. The middle segment of this section passes through open hilly area and Aarey Farm area. Milind Nagar slums and Tungawa hutments on either side mark the eastern segment of the section. Besides residential land use, other major land uses observed along this section of JVLR are viz, industrial, commercial, and recreational. Major Industrial area viz. Santacruz Electronics and Export Promotion Zone (SEEPZ) is located along the road at Km 3+070. L&T factory located at the eastern end of Section 1 is one major industry located along the road. Towards the east of the SEEPZ area, lies an extension (Phase II of SEEPZ) of the industrial promotion zone.

Central sectionEdit

The segment of the JVLR which starts from Saki Vihar Road junction and ends at LBS Marg junction (in Gandhi Nagar ) is referred to as Section 2 of JVLR. As it is located in the middle of the entire JVLR, it is also referred as the middle section of the JVLR. The length of the middle section is 4.3 km. Section 2 was re-constructed with rigid pavement for a width of 2-4 lanes width (i.e. 7-14 m) in 1996-97. The pavement was widened in subsequent years with rigid pavement and flexible pavement in others. Section 2 was later widened by the BMC to an unequal width of 4-6 lane (with/without central median) with rigid pavement, barring a length of about one kilometre opposite the IIT campus. The entire Section 2 was widened to 6-lane with a central median in the 2000s under the MUTP . Out of six lanes, four central lanes have been constructed with flexible bituminous concrete and outermost lanes on either side have been asphalted. In the middle section, the terrain is slightly rolling, but the road alignment passes over almost level ground from L&T factory to lIT campus. Beyond lIT campus, the alignment runs down over a steep hill further to meet LBS Marg .

The middle section is aligned along the south bank of the Powai Lake , and the section is also known as Adi Shankaracharya Marg . The initial portion of the alignment starts with staggered junction on Saki Vihar road near the L&T premises and passes between north of L&T compound and south of Powai gardens before joining the north and south ramps of the JVLR. The initial portion of the alignment from Saki Vihar acts as slip roads to the L&T flyover, serving the traffic dispersal from the Saki Vihar Road. The alignment after the end of the flyover traverses east skirting Powai Lake and the IIT campus on its north and residential areas like MHADA and Hiranandani Gardens, as well as the Panch Kutir market area and other commercial areas opposite to IIT on its south. Immediately after lIT campus, JVLR runs close to the Holy Trinity Church, a Gurudwara and the Kendriya Vidyalaya (located within Indian Navy residential complex). After crossing lIT campus, the section further runs down over a steep hill to meet LBS Marg at Gandhi Nagar junction.

The land use pattern along the middle section of JVLR is predominantly Institutional, residential and commercial. Other major land use pattern observed is industrial land use along the western and eastern end of this stretch of JVLR. Powai Lake is located along the northern edge of JVLR. The significance and sprawl of the lake can be gauged from the fact that JVLR traverses along the southern bank of Powai Lake for a length of about one kilometre. Major Institutions viz., Indian Institute of Technology (lIT), Maritime Training Institute, Shipping Corporation of India, Indian Register of Shipping, and private sector consulting firm SGS India Limited are located along this section of the JVLR. Hiranandaru Gardens, a major residential township, is also located on the southern edge of JVLR, opposite Powai Lake. Besides Hiranandani Gardens, Income Tax Officers Residential colony, Coast Guard Officers Residential complex, Indian Navy Civilian Residential colony and several other private residential apartments lie along JVLR. Near the eastern end of this section and towards the southern edge of the JVLR, considerable sprawl of slums is also located behind the marble polishing and retail selling units. These slums are located in an unplanned and haphazard manner along the hilly stretches and hill tops. Solid waste generated from these slum residences is regularly dumped along the down slope of the hills causing immense blemish to an otherwise aesthetically pleasant area. The land value along this stretch of JVLR is constantly increasing and is considered to be one among highly valued locations in the metropolis of Mumbai .

Eastern sectionEdit

The segment of JVLR, which starts from LBS Marg junction and ends at EEH junction, has been referred as Section 3 of the JVLR. This section being located on the eastern side is also referred as eastern section of the JVLR. The length of eastern section is 1.1 km, making it the shortest among the three sections. This section was originally a 2-lane carriageway constructed with bituminous concrete. It was later widened to 2x3-lane divided carriageway with a central median. A flexible pavement was built for this section of carriageway. The eastern section passes through almost flat terrain except for the elevated embankment of the ROB over the central railway tracks.

The eastern section of JVLR starts from LBS Marg junction. Immediately after this major 4-way intersection, JVLR crosses over Central Line at about 100 metre distance. There is an existing 2-lane ROB on the JVLR at this location. The ROB is located in between Kanjurmarg and Vikhroli railway stations, which are located on the north and south of ROB respectively. Immediately after the ROB, on the eastern side of it and on either side of its embankment a sprawling slum area is located. The Tagore Nagar slums, located on the southern side of JVLR and ROB, is large in its spread and is well established. The area located on the northern side of ROB embankment and east of Kanjurmarg station , was identified as Relocation and Rehabilitation site for the Project affected persons (PAP) of various railway projects, that were implemented under MUTP. The land area on either side of JVLR and between ROB and EEH is essentially marshy with wild grass outgrowth to large extent. Kannamwar nallah and many other man-made drainage channels carry considerable amount of sewage and criss-cross the marshy land area. The Tagore nagar slums and rehabilitation site are essentially marshy land reclaimed sites.

Along the eastern section of the JVLR, the land area is almost vacant except for the slums near the Central Railway tracks. The marshy and highly degraded wasteland engulfs the road from either side for most part of its length. A narrow industrial land use corridor is located between LBS Marg and the Central Line and running parallel to them is also observed. Major inidustrial facilities belonging to Hindustan Lever Limited, Sprite Industries and Cadilla Pharmaceuticals are located within this corridor. A part of the marshy and wasteland site opposite Kanjurmarg railway station was identified and chosen for resettling some of the Project affected families (PAFs) affected due to the railway projects that were implemented under the MUTP. With the implementation of various R&R and CEMP measures for this resettlement site, the land use pattern along northern edge of the JVLR stretch was altered.

JunctionsEdit

There are 5 major at-grade and grade-separated junctions or junction sets on the middle section, including the end junctions i.e. Saki Vihar Road junction and LBS Marg junction, the details of which are given below: The Saki Vihar Road junction, also known as the L&T junction, is the first junction on Section 2 and is a staggered one connecting Section 1 with Section 2 via the Saki Vihar road. The JVLR from the Section 1 side (or Jogeshwari side) and from Vikhroli side join the Saki Vihar Road in a staggered manner as the L&T land intercepts the JVLR for 100 m length of initial portion of Section 2. At this location, the L&T flyover across Saki Vihar road connects Section 1 with Section 2 through L&T land. Also, the initial portion of the alignment from Saki Vihar road junction acts as slip roads to the flyover, serving the traffic dispersal from the Saki Vihar road. The at-grade improvements to this intersection were required for easy movement of Turing traffic from/to Saki Vihar road and the JVLR, and for through movement of Saki Vihar road traffic. The at-grade improvements such as auxiliary lanes for free left turning, storage lanes for right turn traffic, channelised islands for guiding the traffic etc. were built for better functioning of ground traffic movement. Also, improvements like widening of carriageway to suit the intersection requirements, median and footpath of the existing Saki Vihar road for 150 m length on either side near the intersection was also carried out under the intersection improvements.

The Chandivali junction facilitates traffic exchange from AGLR and Saki Vihar road to the JVLR, and helps share the traffic load at Saki Naka junction.

Hiranandani junction and DP Road junction: The traffic on Hiranadani Road is mainly intra-city, when then intersects with a mixture of through and intra-city traffic on the JVLR. This road significantly contributes traffic inflow into junction and causes junction delays. Service roads were constructed connecting these two junctions, to ease off this condition and to facilitate through traffic on JVLR a hindrance free movement.

The IIT Main Gate junction and the IIT Market junction are both 3-armed junctions; the minor arm is very small road leading to residential areas. Both IIT Main Gate junction and IIT Market junction are provided with traffic signals and the main intention of these signals was for safe crossing of the pedestrians. Since, the distance between IIT Main Gate, IIT Market Gate and Gandhi Nagar junctions is less and due to high traffic volume on Adi Shankaracharya Marg, traffic jams are common especially during peak hours. Grade separated pedestrian facilities (like footbridges) have been constructed to reduce the necessity of pedestrian traffic signals at these locations and lead to faster traffic flow on the JVLR. The LBS Marg junction, also known as the Gandhi Nagar junction, is the last junction on Section 2 and is a 4-legged one. LBS Marg from Mulund side and Vikhroli side join the JVLR. This junction is the crossing of two important arterial roads of Mumbai carrying long distance through traffic and also local traffic. A flyover across LBS Marg at this location, connects Section 2 with Section 3 of the JVLR. The at-grade improvements to this intersection were required for easy movement of Turing traffic from/to LBS Marg and the JVLR, and for through movement of LBS Marg traffic. The at-grade improvements such as auxiliary lanes for free left turning, storage lanes for right turn traffic, channelised islands for guiding the traffic etc. were built for better functioning of ground traffic movement. Also, improvements like widening of carriageway to suit the intersection requirements, median and footpath of the existing LBS Marg for 150 m length on either side near the intersection was also carried out under the intersection improvements. The JVLR flyover slip roads on both sides are concretized.

The only junction on the eastern section of JVLR is with Seth Govindram Jolly Marg in Tagore Nagar , Vikhroli (East).

HistoryEdit

The JVLR, connecting the Western Express Highway at Jogeshwari and the Eastern Express Highway at Vikhroli , was opened to traffic in 1994. At the time, it provided the only direct east-west link between these Highways for a considerable distance towards north of Greater Mumbai . Prior to 1994, the link road was available for traffic only in segments. Access was possible from Andheri (East) through Marol and up to Kamal Amrohi studio on the western side. On the eastern side, access was possible from LBS Marg (Gandhi Nagar junction) and up to the Indian Institute of Technology (lIT) campus. In the mid-1980s, the section between IIT campus and Saki Vihar road was connected south of Powai Lake. The final 2-lane wide link connecting Kamal Amrohi studio and Saki Vihar Road was constructed in 1994. The JVLR had a varying cross section; the road was barely a 2-lane single carriageway for some of its length, with deficient geometry. It also carried significant goods traffic, and by 2002, was grossly inadequate to cater to traffic demand.

In 1994, a comprehensive transport plan was prepared by MMRDA to arrest and improve the deteriorating transport condition in the Mumbai Metropolitan Region. The study recommended that the existing 2-lane wide JVLR be widened to a 6-lane carriageway, as well as other improvements. The widening and improvement of the JVLR was later taken up under the Mumbai Urban Transport Project (MUTP). In 2002, the Government of Maharastra, the Indian Railways and the MMRDA, with financial assistance from the World Bank, decided to undertake the MUTP to find a long term solution to city's transport and communication issues. Mumbai, being a vertical city geographically, has resulted in rail and road connectivity being concentrated along the north-south route. After a population explosion and subsequent growth of the suburbs, the authorities realised that the city's east-west connectivity had been mostly ignored with weak road links and only a handful of bridges to cross over the rail lines. The MUTP identified a number of subprojects to strengthen the suburban rail and road transport in Greater Mumbai and the Mumbai Metropolitan Region (MMR) as a whole. As a part of the MUTP Road Transport Component programme, the existing 2-lane JVLR from the Western Express Highway (WEH) to the Eastern Express Highway (EEH) , would be widened to a 6-lane road with a central median.The JVLR, along with the Santa Cruz – Chembur Link Road (SCLR), was one of the two east-west road corridor projects implemented under the first phase of the MUTP, and were intended to ease commutation problems and act as links between Mumbai's Eastern and Western Suburbs.

The World Bank agreed to provide financial assistance for the JVLR project under the road component of MUTP. This project was also selected by the World Bank as one of the demonstration projects for Resettlement & Rehabilitation (R&R). The JVLR and SCLR projects were initially entrusted to the Public Works Department (PWD) for implementation as per World Bank guidelines. Later on, these works were entrusted to the Maharashtra State Road Development Corporation (MSRDC) for implementation as per World Bank guidelines, and the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) was appointed as the nodal agency. The detailed engineering study for the project was carried out by Wilbur Smith Associates Inc. (WSA) during 1998-99. Detailed traffic analysis and forecast for the road was carried out by WSA in 1998 as part of the detailed engineering and design of the JVLR. The MMRDA appointed Wilbur Smith Associates (WSA) in association with MVA Asia Ltd., Consulting Engineering Services (I) Pvt. Ltd. and Transport and Planning Group for the feasibility study, detailed engineering design and preparation of contract documents for the project under MUTP-II programme. The detailed project report, detailed engineering etc. for JVLR were prepared by the consultants in 1998 and was accepted by the World Bank.

Widening and improvementEdit

Land acquisition and rehabilitationEdit

The total number of affected structures due to Phase I was 341 of which 241 were residential, 68 commercial, 5 residential-cum-commercial and 17 community and religious structures. Tenements and shops were constructed at Majas Resettlement site to resettle the project affected households losing structures. The Majas resettlement colony is within 2 Km of the current location of the PAHs. All those who lost the houses for Phase I of the project were entitled to 20.91 sq. m free of cost. The affected shopkeepers were provided with more or less the same area as an alternative shop to enable them to continue their business in the new location up to a maximum of 70 sq. m. as per the R& R policy, but subject to payment for additional cost of the area above 20.91 sq. m. All the households and shopkeepers were accommodated in the tenements and shops constructed on the land at the Majas site, which is about 2 km from the project affected area. Some PAHs from Section III were provided an option of resettlement at a nearby site in Kanjurmarg. A parcel of 1.2 hectares of land was acquired from Majas village, situated within a 2 km radius of the affected structures of PAH. 1156 units (983 Residential, 140 shops and 33 Amenities) were constructed at the Majas site. All the residential and commercial PAHs were be resettled at Majas Resettlement colony. The proposed resettlement site had a provision of allotment of society offices, balwadies, welfare centers and amenities. In addition to this, the community urban infrastructure facilities like water supply, storm water drains, septic tanks, and recreational garden and tree plantations were also provided. School and other educational facilities were provided on adjacent land.

The total area of land required for Phase II of the project was 1,95,596 sq.m. The land was transferred from Government agencies or acquired under the Land Acquisition Act or Slum Act. As a result of Private Land Acquisition, 18 land owners and about slum land 34 land owners were affected. As a result of the private land acquisition, 481 structures were affected of which 123 are residential, 327 commercial, 19 residential-cum-commercial and 12 were other structures which included six Suvarnababa Temple structures, one Hanuman Mandir, one Gurudwara, one police chowky and other structures. All the affected persons were squatters or encroachers. All the affected PAPs losing residential houses for were resettled at the Hariyali Resettlment site, which is within 2 km distance of the project affected area. The site had been primarily developed for another project called the Thane-Kurla Road project. A surplus of about 150 units was used for PAPs affected by the JVLR project. All the affected shopkeepers were be shifted to the Hiranandani Complex, a shopping complex which is about 1 km from the project affected area .

ConstructionEdit

The widening and improvement work for the 10.6 km JVLR was divided into 3 sections. Section I consists of the 4.9 km long stretch from the Western Express Highway to Saki-Vihar Road junction near L&T Powai. Section II was the 4.4 km section from Saki–Vihar Road junction to LBS Marg junction, and Section III contained the 1.3 km stretch from LBS Marg junction to the Eastern Express Highway. Section I, II and III were widened to a 2x3 lane concrete road, a 6-8 lane concrete road, and a 2x3 lane flexible pavement respectively. For the purpose of execution, the work was divided into two phases - Phase I comprising Sections I and III and Phase II comprising Section II. The L&T Flyover and LBS Marg Flyover (which are part of the JVLR) were constructed up by the MSRDC as separate packages that were not financed through MUTP. The widening of the Kanjurmarg ROB over the Central Line in Section 3 was implemented as part of LBS Marg Flyover project.

Bid documents were prepared as per the guidelines of the World Bank, and bids were invited on International Competitive Basis (ICB). The work was awarded to the lowest substantially responsive bidder after evaluation of bids as per the guidelines and due approval of the for the same from the World Bank. After completion of construction work on the project, the JVLR was handed over to the BMC for further maintenance and operations. The entire project to widen and improve the JVLR was completed in February 2012 at a cost of 221.45 crore (equivalent to 253 crore or US$42 million in 2014).

Phase IEdit

The main work involved in Phase I was:

  • Widening of existing two lane asphalt road to 3+3 lane concrete road with central divider and 2 metre wide asphalted side shoulder on either side
  • Widening existing Cross Drainage (CD) works and bridges to accommodate 4+4 lanes
  • Flattening the existing steep gradients wherever found necessary to improve profile
  • Introduction of a 3 lane flyover for Jogeshwari bound traffic at the junction of SEEPZ
  • Introduction of two vehicular underpasses, one near SEEPZ junction in and the other near Hariyali village (near Eastern Express Highway) & one pedestrian underpass near Milind Nagar .

The contract for Phase I was put to tender for 738.1 million (US$12 million), and was awarded to a joint venture of NCC Ltd. and Maytas-Mahavir for 662.7 million (US$11 million). STUP Consultants Ltd. were appointed as Project Management Consultants for this phase. The notice to proceed with work (or work order) on Phase I was issued on 17 July 2003, and originally scheduled to complete in 20 months.

Phase IIEdit

Phase II involved the widening of the existing unequal 4 lane road into a 6-8 lane concrete road with 2.5m wide foot path on one side and a central divider including widening cross drainage works, construction of two pedestrian subways, one vehicular subway, construction of a 5 metre wide promenade on the lake side along the JVLR, as well as beautification of Powai Lake including the construction of a retaining wall.

The contract for Phase II was put to tender for 584.4 million (US$9.8 million), and was awarded to Unity Infraprojects Ltd. for 531.3 million (US$8.9 million). Consulting Engineering Services (I) Pvt. Ltd. were appointed as Project Management Consultants for this phase. The work order for Phase II was issued on 10 February 2005, and construction was originally scheduled to complete in 14 months.

Other ElementsEdit

DrainageEdit

The western section of JVLR drains through the Oshiwara river (via the WEH drainage system or via Majas nallah) and Mithi river systems (directly into the river, via drainage channel at pipeline bridge or via the Saki Vihar road drainage system). Each system has its own network of tributaries and channels (nallahs) across JVLR. The Oshiwara river flows east into the sea and Mithi river flows south into Mahim creek . The middle section of the JVLR drains to Powai Lake (directly into the lake or via the Saki Vihar road drainage system) and Kannamwar Nagar nallah (via the LBS Marg drainage system). The eastern section of the JVLR drains into the Kannamwar Nagar nallah (directly to the nallah or via the LBS Marg drainage system).

Prior to the improvement of the JVLR under MUTP, along section 1 of the JVLR, the existing 2-lane carriageway had been provided with open roadside drains along the stretches that pass through habitations. Roadside drains were installed on one side or either side of the road between Pratap Nagar. (Km 0+000) to Poonam Nagar road junction (Km 2+000). Between Km 2+000 to 4+900, i.e. the end of section 1, no roadside drains were present. Along Section 2, roadside drains were provided on either side near IIT campus and one side near the stretches opposite Hiranandani Gardens. The downward slope side of the hill section does not have roadside drains. Along section 3, roadside drains were not provided along the existing 2-lane carriageway. Throughout the JVLR, no localised flooding has been reported except during incessant rains lasting for more than a week at a stretch. There are no low-lying areas along JVLR that are not connected to drainage system. Problems of water-logging and flooding are not reported in the area along the JVLR, possibly because of the rolling terrain and existence of good natural drainage systems.

Storm water drains were built on either side of JVLR as part of improvement made under MUTP. The new roadside drains were connected to the existing storm drainage system/drains in the area at appropriate locations. The design of storm water drainage system was based on the guidelines given by IRC SP–42. The important parameters in the design of storm drainage system are the design rainfall intensity and estimation of runoff. Concrete rectangular drains were installed along the road for the road surface drainage system.

GeologyEdit

Soil in the area is alluvial type mixed with sand and falls under the semi-impervious to impervious category. Soil erodibility is moderate. Soil analysis indicated that at all locations along the JVLR, it is sandy loam. Clay content is high above 50%. The soil falls under poor to fair category, with regard to using it in highway construction. The geology of the region is typical of the western coast of India, i.e. clayey soil underlain by basalt rock formations.

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