Mula-Mutha Riverfront Development Project : 44-km river bank development, estimated cost Rs 4,700 crore, works to be completed in 11 phases

Pune : NpNews24 Online Tenders for the Mula-Mutha Riverfront Development Project phases 9 and 10 will be opened on February 4 and 7, respectively. These two phases are estimated to cost Rs 1,000 crore. The first phase will cover works from Sangamwadi to Bund Garden and Bund Garden to Mundhwa.


In the next phase, Aundh to Sangamwadi and Khadakwasla to Sangamwadi works will be undertaken. However, all causeways, including Baba Bhide Bridge, will be removed. Moreover, the road along the river will also be demolished to carry out the development works. This was revealed during a presentation made at the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) on Wednesday.


The civic administration made a detailed presentation before the media on the riverfront development of 44-km long stretch along Mula-Mutha river that flows through the city. Municipal Commissioner Vikram Kumar, Addl Municipal Commissioner Kunal Khemnar, City Engineer Prashant Waghmare and Project Engineer Srinivas Bonala were present.


The project will be implemented in 11 phases and is estimated to cost Rs 4,700 crore. Civic officials answered queries and doubts raised by journalists during the presentation.


Work started in 2016

Work on the Mula-Mutha Riverfront Development Project started in 2016. A geographical and environmental survey of the river and its surroundings was conducted. Opinions and expectations of citizens staying along the river banks were elicited. Flood situations in the past 100 years were studied. Then the project was planned and was approved by the PMC Standing Committee. Permissions of various departments were taken, said civic officials.


Objective of the project

The main objective of the project is to treat the sewage water before releasing it into the river; to stop dumping of garbage and encroachments on the river banks; to remove obstacles from the river current so that flooding of areas on the banks does not take place; to increase the capacity of river current; to rejuvenate the river environmentally; to set up entertainment points along the river to attract citizens to spend time on the river banks; to build jogging tracks, cycling tracks and to carry out afforestation and beautification of the riverfront.


What exactly will be done?

The entire sewage water will be treated, with the help of the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA). Two separate drainage pipelines will be laid along the two banks to bring sewage water to the sewage treatment plants (STPs) through various nullahs. The river rejuvenation and the riverfront development will be carried out simultaneously to ensure seamless development of the river banks. The historic monuments on the river banks will be preserved and developed under the project. Around 68-hectare land along the river will be made available, where afforestation will be done on 75% of land.


Barrage to come up behind Garware College

Currently, there are bunds or barrages in the Khadki Cantonment Board and Bund Garden areas. One barrage will be built behind the Garware College on the river. This will maintain a water level of 1-1.5 metre. This will also ensure a certain water level permanently in the entire river stretch passing through the city. The barrage will have its gates at the bottom so that there will be no accumulation of silt.


Which obstacles will be removed?

The causeways, including Baba Bhide Bridge, the causeway at Amruteshwar Ghat and the one at Nanded-Shivane will be removed in the next phase. The heights of these bridges will be increased at these places. The road from Jayantrao Tilak Bridge up to Mhatre Bridge will be demolished. An alternative road will be developed for this road.


The purpose behind completing works from Sangamwadi to Bund Garden and from Bund Garden to Mundhwa

This part runs along the banks after the confluence of both rivers. Not much construction has been carried out along the river banks in these areas. There is also greenery along the banks in these areas. A barrage is already built at Bund Garden. The depth of the river is naturally bigger and there are no major issues in acquiring land along the river in these areas. Expenditure will not be very high. This will ensure speedy works and will present an ideal image of the project. There are roads along both banks in these areas. The road planned in the DP from Sangamwadi to Bund Garden will be developed.


What will happen to age-old ghats on the river banks?

Besides the existing ghats, 50 more ghats will be developed along the river. There are steps or roads to enter the river at 50 spots. Around 50 more such spots will be developed. Wherever there is less space available along the banks, a retaining wall will be built along such stretches. Spaces of around 30-m wide and amenity spaces will be developed. Such walls will mainly come up along Mutha banks in the city, where urbanisation is very high. Entrances will be built after every 300-500 metres to access the riverfront. Roads and other alternatives will be made available at these access points.


What will happen to sewage entering from Pawana and Mula rivers?

A plan is being worked out with the Pimpri Chinchwad Municipal Corporation (PCMC) to build STPs to treat water released into Pawana and Mula rivers. The plan for these STPs is in its last stage.


Will the floodlines be changed? How will this project be maintained?

No major changes will be made to the Blue Line and Red Line determined by the Pune Irrigation Department. They will be altered at some places. However, this is not required in the first phase. Property owners along the banks will automatically benefit after the riverfront development. Their property rates will be appreciated. UK-based FCDU has been given the work to formulate a policy for the project’s long-term maintenance. The General Body’s approval will be taken while finalising this policy.


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