The Western Railway’s Mumbai division has proposed a 2.5-kilometer elevated line between Mahim and Khar in order to facilitate direct transit of long-distance trains, such as Vande Bharat, Shatabdi, and two Rajdhani Express trains operating from Mumbai Central Station.
Due to encroachment on the alignment, the WR chose to build an elevated corridor on the fifth line between Mahim and Khar. According to a senior official, the fifth line would guarantee that there is no track change, which might otherwise slow down these premium trains.
There are four lines running at the moment between Churchgate and Mumbai Central. From Mumbai Central to Mahim, it now has five lines—four for suburban trains and one for long-distance trains. With the exception of the two lines for the harbor line, it drops to four lines once more between Mahim and Khar before rising to seven lines (four suburban, two harbor and one long distance) from Khar to Goregaon.
Since there are only four lines from Mahim to Khar/Santacruz, the long-distance express trains arriving on the fifth line from Mumbai Central get combined with the suburban local train line in Mahim, which slows down the train’s pace and causes delays. According to the official, the establishment of a fifth line via an elevated corridor between Mahim and Khar will facilitate the seamless operation of express trains departing from Mumbai Central. The movement of local trains won’t be hampered by express trains having their own dedicated track.
According to the official, although at first a track was created and a level-crossing was made on the fifth line that was encroached upon, the locals opposed it since it would limit their ability to travel to the burial cemetery. Due to the existing track, the divisional WR office, therefore, proposed two ideas: either to restore the original plan or to construct an elevated corridor over the current road overbridge of Mahim, the creek area, Bandra Terminus, and the burial site up to Khar.
While the headquarters is considering both proposals, the divisional office is more enthusiastic about the elevated corridor idea. According to the source, the proposed concept is being discussed with the building department to determine the cost factor.
Daily, the WR runs 1,394 local services, including 79 AC services. On its suburban network, it serves more than 27.24 lakh commuters per day.