The BMC has begun restoration of the iconic Mint Road Municipal Dispensary building – a dilapidated structure reeking with leakages. The two-storey building, a grade-III heritage structure, located on Mint Road in the Fort area and was occupied by the departments of water, pest control and dispensary.
Though the exact year of construction of the structure is not known, officials from the BMC’s heritage cell say it is at least 60 years old. The structure is unique for its ashlar masonry, using stones from Kurla and Porbandar.
Officials also say that the building the “birthplace” of the insecticide department. “Earlier, there was no separate department for insecticide related works. There was an outbreak of malaria and dengue in the city, following which, for the first time, the insecticide department was set up by the municipality. This iconic building was their first office,” a senior official from the heritage department said.
According to officials, in absence of maintenance in the past, the building is in a state of despair, with deterioration of the wood work, masonry, jack-arch roof and plasters. Several complaints have also been filed by the civic staff about the falling ceiling plaster and vegetation growth on the wall.
“The work mainly includes reconstruction of brick masonry, restoration of stone work, demolition and reconstruction of floor slabs, woodwork. The work on the restoration has already begun and we will try to finish it within a year,” an official said. The BMC is expected to spend about Rs 2.4 crore.