Development of waterways and promotion of inland water transport may be just what Mumbai needs to ensure faster commutes for its burgeoning population. A rich endowment of water bodies such as lakes, rivers and creeks makes it a low-hanging fruit for a city bursting at the seams with people and automobiles.
Vehicular traffic in the Mumbai Metropolitan Region (MMR) has been increasing at an alarming pace. As per the transport statistics compiled by Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA), the total number of vehicles in MMR was at 8.2 million in 2010.
This number has been growing at an average growth rate of 7% over the past few years. At this rate, the vehicular count will double by 2020, aggravating the problem of traffic congestion.
  • It can help decongest roads by taking some traffic load off, which will allow vehicles to ply faster
  • This will result in significant fuel savings – and not just on the road: fuel consumption on inland water transport is a third of road transport. Also, inland waterways are less prone to traffic jams that increase fuel consumption.
  • carbon emission and pollution levels will reduce proportionately with vehicular traffic moving off the road and on to water. Hopefully, the number of accidents will come down too.
  • It can create new employment opportunities, both direct and indirect, along the waterfront. Needless to mention, tourism will get a solid boost.
  • there would be an increase in vigilance along the waterfront and operational waterways will help provide disaster back-up for bridge-connected parts.
  •  It can help revive the water bodies, particularly the rivers, which are dying or in a serious state of neglect. Currently, the major activities involving waterways are still centred around fishing and short-distance movement of passenger boats at limited locations.
  • Image result for ro ro vessel Image result for ro ro vessel