THANE: The ambitious Thane-Borivli twin road tunnel project has gained some traction with the Thane Municipal Corporation proposing to de-reserve around 34 hectare (ha) of landwithin its ambit for the project in coming days.

A recent survey had revealed that around 8.4 ha in the Majiwada-Manpada administrative ward was required for access to the Thane-Borivli road, while another 25.6 ha was required for the underground tunnel link. A proposal has been moved before the Thane general body for changing the current reservation on the lands, explained officials.

A majority of the land is currently reserved for a botanical and zoological park, Thane transport depot and road development plan. There are also a few residential patches and a green zone in Borivade that will need to be altered to suit the project.

It may be recalled that a study of the possible entry-exit points for the six-lane highway was conducted a few months ago by multiple agencies, including the MMRDA, and is now being executed after it was handed over from the MSRDC recently.Officials had then said that they were working on ensuring minimal disturbance to residential and green zones along the the stretch.

As per initial plans, the highway, along with its 11-km-long tunnel, will connect Thane at Manpada and and Borivli near the Magathane BEST depot, drastically cutting down travel time. The tunnels will be drilled under the Sanjay Gandhi National Park using tunnel boring machines. Each of the two tunnels will have three lanes for traffic and one for pedestrians. The estimated cost of the project is approximately over Rs 10,000 crore. Presently, the route along Ghodbunder road is circuitous and takes at least two hour one way.