Mumbai Urban Transport Project Achievements Resettlement and Rehabilitation Challenges
The Urban Challenge in Mumbai
The Mumbai Urban Transport Project (MUTP) aims to improve rail and road transportation in the traffic-choked mega-city of Mumbai. The city is India’s commercial and financial center and one of the most densely populated in the world.
Almost 90 percent of Mumbai’s motorized commuters use public transport to commute. Lack of investment in transport infrastructure over the years has stretched the city’s suburban rail and bus network to crisis levels.
Roads are increasingly congested as the number of cars is rising rapidly though most streets remain old and narrow. While the city’s major transport arteries lie along the narrow north-south peninsula, east-west road connectivity in the transport system is poor.
Clogged routes, long travel times, and increased transport safety risks are hindering the city’s continued economic growth. With a population already reaching over 20 million for the Mumbai Metropolitan Region and still growing, the challenge of coping with current demand and planning for future needs remains formidable.
The Mumbai Urban Transport Project
Transport development in a mega-city like Mumbai is a complex, continuous, and long term process. The project is therefore designed as a first step to urgently improve physical infrastructure in rail and road transportation and strengthen institutional capacity. It also supports the equitable resettlement and relocation of all those affected by these infrastructure works.
The total cost of the project is US$945 million including a loan from the Bank for US$542 million which was approved by the Bank’s board on June 18, 2002. It came into effect in November 2002 and is expected to be under implementation through June 2008.
Achievements So Far
Rail. With the resettlement of about 10,000 households encroaching along railway tracks, the project already enabled important improvements in the rail system, resulting in major benefits for the city by reducing the travel time of hundreds of thousands of rail passengers by more than 5 minutes in average and by increasing the number of trains during the peak hours by about 7 per cent. Further crucial improvements will result from the completion of the infrastructure capacity improvements that are starting and the delivery of 101 trains that are being purchased with funds from the project.
Roads. Over 400 new buses – out of the 644 envisaged – have already been pressed into service by BEST, the city’s transport authority. More than two thirds of Phase I of the Jogeswari - Vikhroli Link Road is complete; work is in progress on Phase II of the road, as well as on Phases I and II of the Santacruz-Chembur Link Road and six pedestrian underpasses. This will result in significant reduction of travel time on these East-West road links and improve traffic safety for pedestrians.
Resettlement. The project has already resettled more than 14,000 thousand households of the roughly 20,000 identified for resettlement. The new dwellings are a marked improvement for these families, many of whom were among the city’s poorest and lived along the railway tracks in dangerous and squalid conditions. Resettling these households has, in turn, made it possible to improve rail transportation, reducing commuter times for hundreds of thousands of middle- and low-income rail passengers.
Resettling and Rehabilitating Displaced Persons
Almost every major infrastructure improvement in urban India involves land acquisition and resettlement of people.
The problem is especially acute in a densely congested city like Mumbai. The city lies along a narrow peninsula and has an exceptionally large number of people living in unauthorized settlements – many of them on public land.
More than 6 million people live in Mumbai’s slums without proper titles to the land where they live and work. In addition, thousands of small, medium and large shops have been established in these areas.
The absence of policy and institutional capacity to deal with these issues has been one of the key challenges of urban development in Mumbai. These factors have prevented much-needed improvements being made to the city’s transport infrastructure in the past.
Challenges of Resettlement and Rehabilitation
Although MUTP has improved the city’s capacity and standards for resettlement and conducted wide-ranging consultations, resettling all displaced persons is encountering certain challenges.
Chief among these is the challenge of finding suitable locations in a densely populated city like Mumbai to restore the livelihoods of medium and large shopkeepers to their earlier income levels, particularly those affected by the widening of the Santa Cruz- Chembur Link Road.
More recently, new challenges have emerged. These include managing post- resettlement issues such as the provision of utilities and services to new dwellings, providing them access to transportation, managing the cooperative societies, administering community revolving funds, and reducing delays in the transfer of maintenance funds and title deeds.
Of particular concern is that women may have been disproportionately disadvantaged. Their new homes are further from their places of work and for some, their household responsibilities have meant having to forgo these income earning opportunities.
(US $ Million)
|Rail||305||IBRD Loan repayable over 20 years with 5 year grace period|
|Road||150||IBRD Loan repayable over 20 years with 5 year grace period|
|Resettlement||79||IDA Credit - an interest-free loan repayable over 35 years with a 10-year grace period|
|Total From World Bank||542||Channeled through the Government of India|
|Govt. of India and Govt. Maharashtra||403|| |
|Total Cost of Project||945|| |