Mumbai’s Gokhale Bridge Set for Partial Opening After 15-Month Construction

Mumbai, 26th February 2024: Following a 15-month construction period and multiple deadline extensions, the Gopal Krishna Gokhale Bridge in Mumbai is set to open its first side today. The opening ceremony will be led by Guardian Minister Mangal Prabhat Lodha. Nevertheless, there are ongoing concerns among residents regarding the incomplete alignment work on the Barfiwala Bridge, which has been pending for the past two years.

The closure of the Gokhale Bridge in November 2022 had a significant impact on the residents of Andheri, Versova, and Vile Parle, compelling them to take longer routes through the Andheri subway or the Captain Vinayak Gore flyover in Vile Parle. Despite appeals made to the BMC, progress towards reopening half of the bridge is now visible.

Reports indicate that the BMC is seeking expert advice to address the challenge of aligning the Barfiwala Bridge with the Gokhale Bridge, as they face a substantial height difference of at least four-and-a-half feet. Residents express frustration, citing enduring inconvenience for the past four years.

The closure of the Barfiwala ‘Y’ bridge flyover, linking Juhu to the Gokhale Bridge, is expected to persist until the end of the year due to an approximately two-meter height gap between the two flyovers.

Construction challenges included a flash flood in Ambala, where the bridge fabrication occurred, civil works carried out at night due to the bridge’s location above railway tracks, and supply chain disruptions, including a strike at the Steel Authority of India Limited (SAIL) in April 2023. The anticipated completion date for the second arm of the Gokhale Bridge is December 2024. This four-lane structure connects the Western Express Highway in Andheri East to S V Road in the west. Additionally, it includes a connector to Teli Gali in Andheri East. This project aims to enhance transportation infrastructure in the region and provide improved connectivity for commuters. However, work on the second arm has not commenced yet. MLA Ameet Satam, representing Andheri West, praised the project as the BMC’s fastest-executed one, acknowledging the reopening of a bridge over the railway portion within 15 months of its closure.