In just one week, a newly built alternate route measuring 200 meters in length and 24 meters in width will connect the Lohegaon airport exit gate to the Mhada Colony in Viman Nagar.
By taking this route, traffic on the current road connecting the airport to the Pune-Ahmednagar highway near the Ramwadi underpass will be lessened. It will offer a substitute for automobiles when traveling from the airport to places like Mundhwa, Kharadi, Wagholi, Hadapsar, etc.
According to a Pune airport official, travelers will be able to use the road to access a different exit route. They currently experience traffic bottlenecks. The Pune-Ahmednagar road will be connected by the designated stretch. For the project, the Indian Air Force (IAF) has provided land at a minimal annual rent.
Every day, about 30,000 passengers, including more than 500 foreigners, arrive at and depart from Pune airport.
Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) was granted permission by the Union Ministry of Defence to commence work on connecting the proposed road on 0.58 acres of its land on September 19, 2022, through a sanction letter. At a nominal annual license fee of Rs 1 per sqm, up to Rs 2,350 per annum, permission was granted. Civic officials said that the total cost of the project is Rs 1.6 crore.
According to a PMC official, the stretch is built in accordance with the requirements specified in the working permission by the Ministry of Defence. According to the IAF’s specifications, 10-foot walls have been built on both sides of the stretch for security purposes. Recently, they gave the order to fence the compound wall with barbed wire. Additionally, that work is ongoing. On the stretch, PMC workers are installing cables and pipes and building pavements. They are almost done with this. The public will then be able to use the road.
This alternate option, according to residents and activists, is crucial to easing the traffic problems due to the presence of many vehicles outside the airport.
According to a resident of Viman Nagar, it takes 30 minutes at any time of day to travel merely 2 km from Viman Nagar to the airport. The situation of passengers from other parts of the city might be worse.
According to a Wagholi activist, this road will reduce traffic problems outside the airport for flyers coming from Nagar side and more areas, including Mundhwa, Hadapsar, Kharadi, Vadgaonsheri, and Wagholi. It will be a huge relief.