Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis has decided to back the coastal road as it is a much more cost-effective and environment friendly option against the proposed sea link projects.
Chief Minister has already directed the authorities to submit a status report on the project, which will be sent to environment and forests ministry (MoEF) for clearance.
For now atleast the sea links are kept on hold, due to their higher cost. The project is stalled so far because of the Coastal Regulation Zone (CRZ) notification of 2011.
The proposed coastal road, is a better option as it will cost one-sixth the cost of sea links and the opportunity to convert 75 hectares of open spaces into green spaces along the road.
The challenge is to bypass CRZ norms to reclaim, the 2011 notification definitely needs an amendment. The Fadnavis government seeking an amendment for all key infrastructure projects that need minimal reclamation.
The state coastal body has already given its recommendation to the Centre for the coastal road project. The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) remains the nodal authority for the project,