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Eastern Freeway (Mumbai)

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Title: Eastern Freeway (Mumbai)  
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Subject: Jeejabai Bhosle Marg, Expressways in India, Flora and fauna of Mumbai, Dalal Street, Bombay Dockyard
Collection: Expressways in Maharashtra, Roads in Mumbai
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Eastern Freeway (Mumbai)

Eastern Freeway
Route information
Maintained by MMRDA
Length: 16.8 km (10.4 mi)
Existed: 14 June 2013 – present
Major junctions
South end: P D'Mello Road, South Mumbai
North end: Eastern Express Highway, Ghatkopar
States: Maharashtra
Major cities: Mumbai
Highway system

The Eastern Freeway is a controlled-access highway,[1] in Mumbai, that connects P D'Mello Road in South Mumbai to the Eastern Express Highway (EEH) at Ghatkopar. It is 16.8 km long and its estimated cost is 1436 crore (US$230 million). The Eastern Freeway was built by the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) and funded by the Central Government through the Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission (JnNURM). Construction was contracted to Simplex Infrastructure Ltd.[2] A 13.59 km stretch of the freeway, comprising two of three segments with one of the twin tunnels, from Orange Gate on P D'Mello Road up to Panjarpol, near RK Studios in Chembur, was opened to the public on 14 June 2013.[3] The second tunnel was opened on 12 April 2014. The third and final segment from Panjarpol to Ghatkopar-Mankhurd Link Road (GMLR) was opened on 16 June 2014.

The Eastern Freeway is primarily intended to reduce travel time between South Mumbai and the Eastern Suburbs.[4] It is also expected to ease traffic on Dr BR Ambedkar Road, Rafi Ahmed Kidwai Marg, Port Trust Road, P D'Mello Road, the Eastern Express Highway (EEH) and Mohammad Ali Road.[5][6]

Heavy vehicles (except public buses),[7] three-wheelers, two-wheelers, bullock carts, handcarts and pedestrians are prohibited from using the freeway.[8] Vehicles are also prohibited from halting on the freeway. The maximum allowed speed limit is 60 km/h.[9]


  • History 1
  • Construction 2
    • P D'Mello Road to Anik 2.1
    • Anik - Panjarpol link road 2.2
    • Panjarpol - Ghatkopar link road 2.3
    • Other work 2.4
  • Bus services 3
  • References 4


Wilbur Smith and Associates, commissioned in 1962 to study transportation in Bombay, recommended construction of a freeway from the southern part of the city to the Western Express Highway near Bandra.[10] An eastern freeway to connect the Eastern Suburbs with South Mumbai was also proposed in the Central Road Research Institute's transport improvement plan for Bombay in 1983. It also recommended a western freeway to connect the Western Suburbs with South Mumbai. However, the plan was not given serious consideration until about 2003, when work on the Bandra-Worli Sea Link (BWSL), which was part of the proposed Western Freeway, had begun. It led to an increase in traffic in eastern Mumbai, and the MMRDA decided to consider building the Eastern Freeway. The MMRDA called for bid in 2007, and construction of the main freeway began in January 2008, except for the Anik-Panjarpol link road on which construction had begun in 2004.[11] The Eastern Freeway was scheduled to be completed by 18 January 2011[12] but faced several delays due to obtaining permissions for construction in forest and salt pan areas, reclaiming of land and difficulties posed by unmapped underground utilities in the construction work. The delays also escalated the cost of the 9.29 km elevated road from the initial 5.31 billion (US$86 million) to 5.72 billion (US$93 million).[13]

A 14 km section of the 17 km Eastern Freeway was completed by 24 May 2013.[14] Chavan had promised to open the freeway on 7 June 2013, when he inaugurated the Milan flyover in May 2013.[15] The delay in opening the freeway led to criticism from transport experts and the media,[16][17] and protests from angry Mumbai residents.[18] The problem was exacerbated by heavy monsoon rains that caused most other roads to be water logged.[19] A 13.59 km stretch of the Eastern Freeway, comprising the four-lane 9.29 km elevated road from Orange Gate on P D'Mello Road to the beginning of Anik-Panjarpol Link Road and four of eight lanes of the 4.3 km road-tunnel-flyover from Anik to the beginning of Panjarpol-Ghatkopar Link Road, was eventually inaugurated by the Chief Minister himself on 13 June 2013. However, the freeway could not be opened the same day as the stage erected for the ceremony remained in the middle of the road.[20] The freeway was opened to the public the following day.[21]

All civil work on the remaining stretch from Panjarpol to Ghatkopar-Mankhurd Link Road (GMLR) was completed in January 2014. The final stretch is currently expected to open to the public by April 2014.

The original estimated cost of all three segments together was 8.47 billion (US$140 million).[11] The final cost of the project is estimated to be 14.63 billion (US$240 million).[22]


The freeway was built in three segments - a 9.3 km elevated road from Orange Gate on P D'Mello Road to the beginning of Anik-Panjarpol Link Road, a 5 km mostly at grade road featuring twin tunnels from Anik to the beginning of Panjarpol-Ghatkopar Link Road, and a 2.5 km flyover from Panjarpol to Ghatkopar.[23] The 4-lane Eastern Freeway, starts on P.D'Mello Road near Wadi Bandar, and further enters into Mumbai Port Trust road and eventually joins the EEH via Anik Panjarpol Link Road (APLR), near Wadala.[24]

P D'Mello Road to Anik

The first section has a length of 9.3 km, width of 17.2 meters[25] and connects P D'Mello Road to Anik. This phase also includes ground improvement of existing roads, the construction of a 4-lane elevated corridor and the construction of a missing link. This stretch is made up of 4 sections,[26] and has 5 ramps for exit and entry at Reay Road, Port Road, Anik and Orange Gate.[27]

  • Section I – From S.V Patel road junction on P D'Mello road to Orange Gate consisting of up and down ramps (0.41 km)
  • Section II – Orange gate to Mumbai Port Trust (Mbpt) pipeline gate – elevated corridor (7.02 km)
  • Section III – Mbpt pipe line gate to WTT road consisting of construction of elevated corridor through salt pan (Missing Link) and Customs area (0.78 km)
  • Section IV – WTT road near customs area to start of APLR - Elevated corridor (1.08 km)

Civil construction work on this section was completed on 9 March 2013.[28][29] The 9.29 km stretch from Orange Gate to Mahul creek is the longest flyover in Mumbai and third longest flyover in India, after the 25 km Kanpur city bypass flyover on NH-2 and the 11.6 km P.V. Narasimha Rao Elevated Expressway in Hyderabad.[30][31] This segment was opened to the public on 14 June 2013, along with four lanes of the Anik - Panjarpol link road.

Anik - Panjarpol link road

The second segment is the 8-lane, 5 km long Anik - Panjarpol link road.[27] This stretch required the construction of Mumbai's first twin tunnel.[32] The twin tunnels are 505m (North-bound) and 555m (South-bound) in length;[24] 18 metres in width and 9 metres in height.

This segment was opened to traffic on 14 June 2013.[7] However, only the North-bound tunnel was opened on that date, but it was used for two-way traffic. The South-bound tunnel was opened to traffic from 12 April 2014, making the entire stretch 8-lane.[32] The ramps connecting Anik Wadala Road to the Eastern Freeway were opened to traffic on 6 April 2014. The construction of these two ramps had been scheduled to complete in January 2014, but the work was delayed due to unforeseen technical reasons.[22][33]

Panjarpol - Ghatkopar link road

The third segment consists of a 4-lane elevated 2.8 km flyover from Panjarpol till the Ghatkopar-Mankhurd Link Road (GMLR), via Govandi.[34][35] This stretch has 3 ramps near Deonar, Govandi and Panjarpol.[27] The section consists of 103 spans.[36] Like the elevated section of the freeway, the Panjarpol-Ghatkopar Link Road has a bitumen layer atop the concrete, ensuring smoother riding quality than a regular cement road.[37]

Construction work on this phase of the project was awarded in August 2009 at a cost of INR168 crore (equivalent to INR248 crore or US$40 million in 2015),[38] and MMRDA officials announced February 2011 as the deadline. However, obtaining permissions from authorities concerned, rehabilitating projected affected families and engineering challenges involved during the construction stage, delayed the project.[39]

All civil work on the final stretch of the Eastern Freeway, from Panjarpol to Ghatkopar-Mankhurd Link Road (GMLR), was completed in January 2014. Engineers working on the project then concretised the surface of the Panjarpol-Ghatkopar Link Road, which begins at Panjarpol junction near R K Studio in Chembur and ends at the GMLR. When the first phase of the freeway was inaugurated in June 2013, the MMRDA had planned to commission the final stretch in December 2013.[37] The up and down ramps on the Panjrapole - Ghatkopar Link Road at Panjrapole junction were opened for vehicular traffic on the morning of 30 April 2014.[40] By the end of April 2014, the MMRDA was finishing up the painting and concretising and installing streetlights and signs.[39][41] The final leg of the 2.8 km Panjarpol-Ghatkopar link road was opened to traffic on 16 June 2014, marking the commissioning of the entire Eastern Freeway.[42][43]

Other work

Seismic arresters installed on the freeway will enable it to handle earthquakes of up to 7.5 on the Richter scale.[44]

Bus services

Several bus services are operated on the Eastern Freeway, mostly connecting the Eastern and Harbour Suburbs with South Mumbai and further down to Navi Mumbai. Brihanmumbai Electric Supply and Transport (BEST) operates services from Cuffe Parade to Vashi, Mantralaya to Govandi, and Mantralaya to Shivaji Nagar (C-8), Mulund to Colaba (AS-8), Ghatkopar to Mueseum (C-9) via the Eastern Freeway.[45] The Maharashtra State Road Transport Corporation (MSRTC) operates 2x2 seating buses on the freeway.[45] BEST plans to begin bus service as well.[45]

The MSRTC began running AC buses from Panvel to Mantralaya on 23 September 2013,[46] marking the first time that AC buses plied on the Eastern Freeway. AC buses to South Mumbai had been operated by the NMMT prior to MSRTC's service, but the latter was the first time that buses took the Eastern Freeway route.[47]


  1. ^ "From darkness to light". Mumbai Mirror. 24 August 2012. Retrieved 13 March 2013. 
  2. ^ "Vision barriers to prevent possible attacks on sensitive locations". Indian Express. Retrieved 13 March 2013. 
  3. ^ "South Bombay to Chembur in 16 minutes".  
  4. ^ "First phase of Rs.847 crore Eastern Freeway to open by December".  
  5. ^ Manthan K Mehta (23 April 2014). "Entire Eastern Freeway in Mumbai likely to be opened by May". The Times of India. Retrieved 2014-06-19. 
  6. ^ "Mumbai: Eastern Freeway frees up other major roads".  
  7. ^ a b "Zip through Mumbai, over and under".  
  8. ^ "Run more buses for public on Freeway". 15 June 2013. Retrieved 24 June 2013. 
  9. ^ "Mumbai gets Eastern Freeway, finally. Zoom on it from today". 14 June 2013. Retrieved 25 June 2013. 
  10. ^ Shukla, Alka (22 March 2011). "The man who saw tomorrow...". Mumbai Mirror (Mumbai). Retrieved 31 March 2014. 
  11. ^ a b "Zip through Mumbai, over and under".  
  12. ^ "Eastern Freeway cost overrun Rs 259 crore: RTI". The Times of India. TNN. 29 April 2014. Retrieved 2014-06-19. 
  13. ^ "New road corridor of Mumbai by the start of next year". The Times of India. 21 July 2012. 
  14. ^ "Freeway awaits VIP, rough ride awaits you". 10 June 2013. Retrieved 25 June 2013. 
  15. ^ Krishna Kumar (18 June 2013). "Making betting legal no solution".  
  16. ^ "Eastern Freeway to open". 12 June 2013. Retrieved 25 June 2013. 
  17. ^ "Freeway inauguration awaits VIP, rain-hit Mumbaikars wait for relief".  
  18. ^ Raksha Shetty (14 June 2013). "India's second longest flyover will be open to public in Mumbai today". Retrieved 25 June 2013. 
  19. ^ "Eastern Freeway falling apart before it's thrown open to public". 14 June 2013. Retrieved 25 June 2013. 
  20. ^ "Mumbai: eastern freeway opens, but not yet for you".  
  21. ^ "Phase 1 of Eastern Freeway opens to public".  
  22. ^ a b "Ramps linking Wadala to Freeway will open today". The Times of India. 2014-04-06. Retrieved 2014-06-19. 
  23. ^ "Ride your vehicle on India’s second longest flyover in Mumbai today". 13 June 2013. Retrieved 24 June 2013. 
  24. ^ a b Light at the end of the tunnel – India – DNA
  25. ^ "Mumbai Eastern Freeway thrown open to public".  
  26. ^ – Mmrdamumbai and Mumbai Samachar
  27. ^ a b c "Four ways to a faster commute".  
  28. ^ IANS (9 March 2013). "Mumbai to have India's longest elevated road". Retrieved 13 March 2013. 
  29. ^ "The Tribune, Chandigarh, India - Main News". Retrieved 13 March 2013. 
  30. ^ "Travel from Chembur to SoBo in 20 mins".  
  31. ^ "Second largest flyover in the country - Facts about Mumbai's longest flyover on Eastern Freeway | The Economic Times". 9 March 2013. Retrieved 13 March 2013. 
  32. ^ a b Manthan K Mehta (2014-04-11). "South-bound tunnel on Eastern Freeway to be opened tomorrow". The Times of India. TNN. Retrieved 2014-06-19. 
  33. ^ Dna Correspondant (2014-04-06). "Two ramps of the Eastern Freeway at Wadala will be opened to traffic on Sunday". DNA. Retrieved 2014-06-19. 
  34. ^ "Eastern Freeway to be completed today - Times Of India". 9 March 2013. Retrieved 13 March 2013. 
  35. ^ "Eastern freeway slab falls, 1 killed". The Times of India. 20 July 2012. 
  36. ^ "Pending work may ‘mess up’ freeway phase II deadline".  
  37. ^ a b "Second phase of Eastern Freeway in final lap". The Indian Express. 2014-02-15. Retrieved 2014-06-19. 
  38. ^ "Eastern Freeway didn’t match up to plan, says Comptroller and Auditor General - The Times of India" (in Русский). The Times of India. 17 June 2014. Retrieved 2014-06-19. 
  39. ^ a b DNA Correspondent (2014-05-04). "Panjarpol-Ghatkopar Link Road to be ready by mid-May". DNA. Retrieved 2014-06-19. 
  40. ^ "2 more ramps on Eastern Freeway to open today". The Times of India. Retrieved 2014-06-19. 
  41. ^ "Second phase likely to be ready by mid-May". The Indian Express. 2014-04-30. Retrieved 2014-06-19. 
  42. ^ Somit Sen (2014-06-17). "Traffic runs smooth on Eastern Freeway, motorists reach office in record time". The Times of India. TNN. Retrieved 2014-06-19. 
  43. ^ "CM inaugurates Eastern Freeway, Kherwadi flyover in Mumbai". The Hindu. 16 June 2014. Retrieved 2014-06-19. 
  44. ^ "Eastern freeway to have seismic arresters - Mumbai - DNA". Retrieved 13 March 2013. 
  45. ^ a b c Soon, 2 more BEST services on Freeway - Times Of India. (7 September 2013). Retrieved on 6 December 2013.
  46. ^ From Sept 23, hop on to Panvel-Mantralya AC bus - Mumbai - DNA. Retrieved on 6 December 2013.
  47. ^ ?AC bus services on freeway from today - Times Of India. (23 September 2013). Retrieved on 6 December 2013.
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