<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Amid protests by residents of Andheri, Vile Parle, Khar and Juhu demanding construction of DN Nagar-Mandale Metro-2B be underground instead of elevated, Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) on Monday said civil construction of first phase between DN Nagar and Bandra Kurla Complex (BKC) will start by February 2018.Few residents had also approached the Bombay High Court, citing that Metro-2B should be made underground instead of elevated.However, the MMRDA on Monday opened the financial bids for the construction of Metro-2B wherein Simplex Infrastructure was found to be the lowest bidder. Simplex had quoted Rs 1,080 crore against an estimation of Rs 998 crore by MMRDA.This includes construction of 11 elevated stations from ESIC Nagar, Prem Nagar, Indira Nagar, Old Airport, Khira Nagar, Saraswat Nagar, National College, Bandra (W), MMRDA Office, Income Tax Office and BKC.”We have given nod to Simplex Infrastructures Limited, the lowest bidder at rupees one thousand eighty crores,” MMRDA said in a statement issued on Monday.”This is another important step towards developing metro network in the city which is the need of the hour. The contract will be awarded to the contractor after the Executive Committee accords its approval”, said UPS Madan, Metropolitan Commissioner, MMRDA.However, the residents who have challenged MMRDA, cited that an elevated Metro corridor over the major arterial SV Road will lead to traffic congestion and it would also close all doors for the future expansion of Metro.Expected daily ridership on the Metro-2B is over 8 lakh commuters. The 23.5-km-long Metro corridor is a part of the Metro 2 (Dahisar-Charkop—Bandra-Mandale), which was earlier planned underground, but later turned into an elevated corridor.The line was also divided into two parts: Dahisar-DN Nagar Metro-2A and DN Nagar-Mandale Metro-2B, which is being constructed in two phases between DN Nagar- BKC and BKC-Mandale.Meanwhile, tenders of remaining stations from MTNL Metro, SG Barve Marg, Kurla Terminal, Kurla-E, EEH, Chembur, Diamond Garden, Shivaji Chowk, BSNL Metro, Mankhurd, Mandala (Depot) will be floated separately.CITIZENS’ GRUDGESResidents, who have challenged MMRDA, said an elevated Metro corridor over the major arterial SV Road will lead to traffic congestion and close all doors for future expansion of Metro.
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