A walk at Carter Road promenade won’t be same again

A 4,800-sq-ft walking track with a small chess-board ground,a large gazebo,a vermicompost bed and solar and wind energy being harnessed in your neighbourhood.

Written by Dhanya Nair | Mumbai | Published:February 22, 2009 2:15 am

A 4,800-sq-ft walking track with a small chess-board ground,a large gazebo,a vermicompost bed and solar and wind energy being harnessed in your neighbourhood.

Sounds a luxury in space-starved Mumbai,but thanks to a motley group of residents,it will turn into a reality at the long-ignored Carter Road promenade.

Now extending till Khar danda,it is on its way to becoming a world-class recreational centre. The renovated Carter Road promenade extension will be thrown open to public on Sunday. Not only that,a gazebo,powered by solar energy,meant for senior citizens will come up by May. Residents of Khar,Bandra and Santacruz will now have a reason to cheer.

“We had the plan on paper almost an year ago. Work could not be implemented because of funds crunch and lack of co-ordination among the civic body,MHADA and the ALMs (Advanced Local Management) and to educate the slum dwellers residing opposite the promenade that it is for their own good,” said Renuka Tahiliani of the YMCA ALM. But for the residents it has been a worthy wait.

“We got the funds from both our MP Priya Dutt and MLA Baba Siddique,last month and have kick-started work. Also the civic body helped us in removing all squatters in the area and cleaning up the place,but the best support was from slum dwellers near the area. It is the first time that slum dwellers are actively supporting a residents’ development work,” said Tahiliani.

Members of the Khar Residents Association,Pali Hill Residents Association,Amdedkar Road ALM,YMCA Road ALM and Union Park Residents’ Association along with local corporator Kavita Rodriguez handpicked architect PK Das to spearhead the effort.

“The beautification will give a good recreational spot for locals starved of open spaces. Though the outer stretch will be lighted by Reliance power,inside we will put up panels to harness solar energy. There are also plans to install a windmill. At the end of the stretch,there will be a large gazebo which can be used by slum dwellers to carry out their Ganesh puja,” said trustee of Khar Residents Association,Anandini Thakoor.

The challenge is now to maintain the stretch once the beautification is completed. “Considering that it’s a large stretch,we will outsource maintenance work to sponsors. Though we have got two sponsors we need more,” said Thakoor.

Slum dwellers have offered to do their bit. “Since the residents have generously given us permission to use the Gazebo during Ganesh Chaturthi,we will ensure that the cleanliness in the area is maintained. Also our children can use the area at night for studies. Since it is for our own good,we will make sure the place remains beautiful,” said a resident of seaside chawl,Haroon Mohammad Khokar.

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