Last Updated: February 21, 2023, 18:41 IST
India’s first access-controlled expressway was inaugurated in 2002 between Mumbai and Pune. The Mumbai-Pune Expressway, also known as Yashwantrao Chavan Expressway, was constructed by Maharashtra State Road Development Corporation (MSRDC). Union Minister Nitin Gadkari had once said that flights between Mumbai and Pune had almost stopped after the transportation began on Mumbai-Pune Expressway, as it reduced the travel time between the two cities by about two hours and also introduced new levels of speed and safety in automobile transportation.
Till 2019, Jet Airways was running direct flights between Mumbai and Pune, but when it got shut down no direct flights have been arranged between the two cities since then.
The 6-lane expressway spans a total distance of around 95 kilometres connecting two megacities Mumbai and Pune. The expressway begins from Kalamboli town situated in Navi Mumbai and ends at Kiwale town in Pune. This expressway passes through the Sahyadri mountain ranges, several tunnels and beautiful lush green surroundings.
When the idea of building this expressway turned up, Nitin Gadkari was the PWD minister of Maharashtra. He did not permit the tender to any private company for this but got it constructed by raising about Rs 1,600 crore through public funding. He said that the Mumbai-Pune expressway was established by Maharashtra State Road Development Corporation (MSRDC).
This was India’s first expressway, setting new standards for travelling via roadways. However, despite this, due to human fallacy and technical errors, many accidents started happening on this route. After such incidents, the Maharashtra Road Corporation, Mahindra & Mahindra and SaveLIFE together started a campaign to make it a Zero Fatality Corridor. By 2016, hundreds of engineering and technical errors were rectified on this route. It was also reported earlier that the Mumbai-Pune expressway had once become one of India’s busiest and accident-prone roads.
While the maximum permitted speed on other expressways is 180 km per hour, the maximum speed on the Mumbai-Pune expressway is only 100 km per hour. As per reports, the renovation work on the expressway is going to start soon and it would be possible that the authorities would increase the maximum speed limit on this expressway after its renovation is completed.
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