Updated on: 02 December,2021 07:28 AM IST  |  Mumbai
Anurag Kamble | firstname.lastname@example.org
Traffic police permanently ban two-wheelers, autos on new overpass to reduce accidents; four bridges in city are now out of bound for motorbikes and scooters
The BKC connector links the Bandra Kurla Complex with the Sion-Panvel Highway. Pic/Rajesh Gupta
Two-wheelers and autos can never access the BKC connector, with the traffic department imposing a permanent ban on these vehicles on the overpass. With this move, bikers have forever lost access to the 4th bridge in the city. Two-wheeler users termed the decision unfortunate and wondered if Mumbai’s flyovers are meant only for cars. The 1.6-km elevated road was inaugurated in November 2019.
The connector links the business district of Bandra Kurla Complex with the Sion-Panvel Highway. From day one, it was unclear whether bikes and autos would be allowed on it.
The Kalanagar junction flyover at Bandra East is also on the radar. Pic/Pradeep Dhivar
“In order to resolve traffic deadlock on Bandra Kurla Complex, BKC-Chembur connector Flyover Bridge was constructed by the MMRDA. However, in view of fast and free flow of traffic on both bounds of the bridge, entry to two wheeler, three wheeler and heavy vehicles is permanently restricted from November 29,” said a notification by traffic police department.
Abhishek Choudhari, a bike enthusiast and a member of various superbike groups, was upset. He told mid-day, “This is a very unfortunate decision by the traffic police. I don’t understand why biker and three-wheelers have been banned on the flyover. Are we not paying road tax? Even cars also meet with accidents on flyovers. Will they ban them, too? The BMC and traffic police are running away from their responsibilities by banning bikers.”
Traffic police said they first studied the movement of vehicles, entry of bikes and heavy vehicles before taking a call. The study found out that traffic flow will be much smoother if the movement of bikes, autos and heavy vehicles are restricted on the overpass.
Neil Coelho, a superbike owner and riding enthusiast, said, “The problem is not all bikers. Yes, there are a few bikers who don’t follow rules. They should be punished, but putting a blanket ban on bikers doesn’t serve the purpose of the flyover. In fact, the condition of the roads is so pathetic that even cars suffer due to it.”
Coelho said he has Harley-Davidson and Kawasaki Versys bikes and they have the best tyres. “They too leave the roads many times. Traffic police should pursue BMC for better roads rather than blaming bikers.”
AV Shenoy, a transport expert and member of Mumbai Mobility Forum, said, “I support the ban on bikers on flyovers as we have seen indiscipline from them. But I didn’t understand the ban on three-wheelers, i.e. autos. How does it reduce the speed? It also has commuters and they certainly put curbs on the speed of autos. Flyovers are meant to make travel speedy but putting a ban or restriction doesn’t serve the purpose,” he added.
“The decision was taken after studying the movement of the traffic after restricting two- and three-wheelers. The connector is a great help to decongest the bottlenecks at Sion and Dharavi T-junction. There have been some modifications to the Kalanagar bridge to reduce accidents. We are keeping a close eye on traffic movement on it,” said Raj Tilak Roshan, DCP (Headquarter-Central).
Eye on Kalanagar flyover, too
The traffic police are also keeping an eye on the newly inaugurated Kalanagar bridge, as it saw accidents involving two-wheelers. They have also put rumblers and signages to reduce the speed of vehicles.
The flyover, which connects the WEH with the BKC, was opened in June. “The flyover has sharp turns resulting in bike accidents. As per our recommendations, rumblers and signage have been placed, but we are keeping a close eye on the traffic movement. If needed, we will have to take a decision about it too,” said a senior traffic police officer.
Length, in km, of the BKC connector
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