Published On:June 12 2024
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MRVC Announces Breakthrough of Longest Tunnel on Panvel-Karjat Suburban Rail Line

The Mumbai Railway Vikas Corporation (MRVC) announced on Friday the successful breakthrough of the longest tunnel on the under-construction Panvel-Karjat suburban railway line. The breakthrough of the 2,265-meter-long Wavarle tunnel, whose excavation commenced on February 22 last year, was achieved in the afternoon in the presence of MRVC CMD Subhash Chand Gupta and other senior personnel, stated chief public relations officer Sunil Udasi.

Udasi remarked, "The successful breakthrough of the tunnel represents a major milestone in the Panvel-Karjat railway project, paving the way for enhanced connectivity and transportation efficiency in the Mumbai suburban region." He further elaborated that the Panvel-Karjat line, being constructed as part of the Mumbai Urban Transport Project Phase 3, comprises three tunnels, with the other two measuring 219 meters and 320 meters in length.

Detailing the characteristics of the Wavarle tunnel, Udasi noted that it measures 7.323 meters in height and 13.282 meters in width and was excavated using the New Austrian Tunnelling Method (NATM). Notably, it will be the first ballastless track of the Mumbai suburban network and includes features such as public refuge areas, a tunnel control system (SCADA), lighting, firefighting, and ventilation mechanisms meeting contemporary international standards.

Udasi highlighted the significant challenges encountered during the project, including fractured rock masses with water seepage and minimal cover during excavation, as well as two water streams crossing the tunnel alignment. Despite these challenges, an average underground excavation output of 175 meters per month was achieved through meticulous planning, with two rounds of blasting per day during the day as night-time blasting is not permitted.

Under the MUTP-3 initiative, MRVC has undertaken various projects aimed at enhancing suburban rail infrastructure, including the quadrupling of tracks between Virar and Dahanu Road on Western Railway, the elevated suburban link between Airoli and Kalawa stations on Central Railway, the procurement of 565 suburban locals, and trespass control on the mid-section on Central and Western Railway, besides the Panvel-Karjat double line project worth Rs 476 crore, as per the rail PSU's website.

Officials emphasized that MRVC, a joint venture of the Union and Maharashtra governments, is dedicated to improving suburban rail infrastructure to provide commuters with an enhanced traveling experience.

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